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@bt fifoerjHbe pre??, Cambribge 

Copyright, 1882 and 1899, 

Copyright, 1899, 

All rights reserved. 


THIS new edition of this book has been revised 
line by line, and the corrections, amendments, and 
additions, which have been collected during the 
sixteen years since it was first written, are now 
incorporated in it. I have had the very great 
advantage of using a collection of unpublished let- 
ters of Jackson to William B. Lewis, 250 in num- 
ber, the property of the Messrs. Ford. I have 
been allowed to avail myself of all the material in 
these letters which was useful for my purpose ; 
and I have now to make my acknowledgments to 
the owners of them for their courtesy and gener- 
osity. In the quotations from Jackson's letters I 
have reproduced the original exactly, as respects 
spelling, punctuation, and capitals, not even cor- 
recting obvious slips of the pen, or inaccuracies 
of an old man. It is left to the reader to make 
such allowances where necessary. As I have been 
under strict injunctions not to increase the size of 
the book, I have cancelled much which was in- 
tended, in the first edition, to elucidate events or 
proceedings of Jackson's time, but which did not 



strictly belong to it. The cancelled passages were 
especially important in Chapters VIII. , IX., and 
X. of the first edition. The great number of 
excellent works which have been added to the 
literature of American history within sixteen years 
make these passages less necessary. On the whole, 
therefore, I have curtailed the history and extended 
the biography. 

YALE UNIVERSITY, October, 1898. 






IV. ELECTION OF 1824 92 


TRATION -._ 176 

TRATION . . . v . . 214 
1. West India Trade; 2. Spoliation Claims; 3. 
Federal Judiciary ; 4. Indians ; 5. Public Lands ; 
6. Internal Improvements; 7. Tariff; 8. Nullifi-. 
cation: 9. Bank. 







REER ........... 439 


VOLUME . .. , 461 

INDEX , 469 



IN the middle of the last century a number of 
Scotchmen and Scotch-Irishmen migrated to the 
uplands of North and South Carolina. Among 
these was Andrew Jackson, who came over in 1765, 
with his wife and two sons, being accompanied 
also by several neighbors and connections from 
Carrickfergus, County Antrim, Ireland. They ap- 
pear to have been led to the spot at which they 
settled, on the upper waters of the Catawba river, 
by the fact that persons of their acquaintance in 
Ireland had previously found their way thither, 
under special inducements which were offered to 
immigrants. 1 The settlement was called the Wax- 
haw Settlement, and was in Mecklenburg County, 
North Carolina, but close to the South Carolina 

1 2 Hewitt, 13, 268, 272. A bounty was offered equal to the 
cost of passage. Ship captains became immigration agents. 

For the full titles of books referred to, see the list at the end of tht> 


boundary. Andrew Jackson had no capital, and 
never became an owner of land. In 1767 he died. 
His son Andrew was born within a few days of 
the father's death, March 15, 1767. Parton fixes 
his birthplace in Union County, North Carolina ; 
Kendall in South Carolina. In Jackson's Pro- 
clamation of 1832, in a letter of December 24, 
1830, 1 and in his will, he speaks of himself as a 
native of South Carolina. 

It appears that Andrew Jackson's mother aban- 
doned the settlement which her husband had com- 
menced, and it is probable that she owed much to 
the assistance of her relatives and connections while 
Andrew was a child. Circumstances of birth more 
humble than those of this child can scarcely be 
imagined. It was not, probably, hard to sustain 
life in such a frontier community. Coarse food 
was abundant; but to get more out of life than 
beasts get when they have enough to eat was no 
doubt very difficult. The traditions of Jackson's 
education are vague and uncertain. Of book-learn- 
ing and school-training he appears to have got 
very little indeed. 

The population of the district was heterogeneous, 
and, when the Revolutionary War broke out, the 
differences of nationality and creed divided the 
people by opposing sympathies as to the war. The 
English penetrated the district several times in the 
hope of winning recruits and strengthening the 
tories. On one of these raids Andrew Jackson 

1 39 Niles, 385. 


was wounded by an officer, who struck him. because 
he refused to brush the officer's boots. He and 
his brother were taken prisoners to Camden. The 
war cost the lives of both Andrew's brothers, and 
also that of his mother, who died while on a journey 
to Charleston to help care for the prisoners there. 
/Andrew Jackson accordingly came to entertain a 
vigorous hatred of the English from a very early 
Igge. In 1781 he was alone in the world. What 
means of support he had we do not know, but, 
after trying the saddler's trade, he became, in 
1784, a student of law at Salisbury, North Caro- 
lina. The traditions collected by Parton of Jack- 
son's conduct at this time give us anything but the 
picture, so familiar in political biography, of the 
orphan boy hewing his way up to the presidency 
by industry and self-denial. If the information is 
trustworthy, Jackson was gay, careless, rollicking, 
fond of horses, racing, cock-fighting, and mischief. 
Four years were spent in this way. 

It is necessary to note the significance of the 
fact that a young man situated as Jackson was 
should undertake to " study law." 

In the generation before the Revolution the in- 
tellectual activity of the young men, which had 
previously been expended in theology, began to be 
directed to the law. As capital increased and pro- 
perty rights became more complicated there was 
more need for legal training. In an agricultural 
community there was a great deal of leisure at 
certain seasons of the year, and the actual outlay 


required for an education was small. The standard 
of attainments was low, and it was easy for a 
farmer's boy of any diligence to acquire, in his 
winter's leisure, as much book-learning as the best 
colleges gave. In truth the range of ideas, among 
the best classes, about law, history, political science, 
and political economy, was narrow in the extreme. 
What the aspiring class of young men who were 
self-educated lacked, as compared with the techni- 
cally "educated," was the bits of classical and 
theological dogmatism which the colleges taught 
by tradition, and the culture which is obtained by 
frequenting academical society, however meagre 
may be the positive instruction given by the insti- 
tution. What the same aspiring youths had in 
excess of the regularly educated was self-confi- 
dence, bred by ignorance of their own short-com- 
ings. They were therefore considered pushing 
and offensive by the colonial aristocracy of place- 
holders and established families, who considered 
that " the ministry " was the proper place for 
aspiring cleverness, and that it was intrusive when 
it pushed into civil life. The restiveness of the 
aspiring class under this repression was one of the 
great causes of the Revolution. The lawyers be- 
came the leaders in the revolt everywhere. The 
established classes were, as classes, tories. After 
the war the way was clear for every one who wanted 
office, or influence, or notoriety, to attain these 
ends. The first step was to study law. If a young 
man heard a public speaker, and was fired by the 


love of public activity and applause, or if he be- 
came engaged in political controversy, and was 
regarded by his fellows as a good disputant, or if 
he chanced to read something which set him think- 
ing, the result was very sure to be that he read 
some law. The men, whose biographies we read 
because they rose to eminence, present us over and 
over again the same picture of a youth, with only 
a common school education, who spends his leisure 
in reading law, while he earns his living by teach- 
ing or by farm work. Those, however, whose bio- 
graphies we read are only the select few who 
succeeded, out of the thousands who started on the 
same road, and who were arrested by one circum- 
stance or another, which threw them back into the 
ranks of farmers and .store-keepers. We shall see 
that Andrew Jackson so fell back into the position 
of a farmer and store-keeper. Chance plays a 
great role in a new community, just as it does in p- 
primitive civilization. Chance had very much to 
do with Jackson's career. We have no evidence 
that he was dissatisfied with his circumstances, and 
set himself to work to get out of them, or that he 
had any strong ambition towards which the law 
was a step. There is no proof that he ever was an 
ambitious man ; but rather the contrary. He never 
learned any law, and never to the end of his 
life had a legal tone of mind; even his admirer, 
Kendall, admits this. 1 His study of law had no 
influence on his career, and no significance for his 

1 Jackson, 109, 


character, except that it shows him following the 
set or fashion of the better class of young men of 
his generation. If conjecture may be allowed, it 
is most probable that he did not get on well with 
his relatives, and that he disliked the drudgery of 
farming or saddle-making. A journey which he 
made to Charleston offers a very possible chance 
for him to have had his mind opened to plans and 

In 1789, Jackson's friend, John McNairy, was 
appointed judge of the Superior Court of Law 
and Equity of the District of Mero, i. e., David- 
son, Sumner, and Tennessee Counties, Tennessee. 
McNairy and Jackson were admitted to the bar at 
Greenville, in May, 1788, the Court sitting there, 
under the authority of the State of North Carolina, 
without interruption, for the first time after the 
Franklin troubles. 1 Jackson arrived in Tennes- 
see in the fall of 1789 or the spring of 1790. He 
settled in Jonesboro. Tennessee was then a wild 
frontier country, in which the whites and Indians 
were engaged in constant hostilities. It was shut 
off from connection with the Atlantic States by the 
mountains, and its best connection with civilization 
was down the Ohio and Mississippi rivers. Such 
frontier communities have always had a peculiar 
character. In them the white man has conformed, 

1 Haywood, 194. Haywood writes Frankland. Allison (29) says 
that Sevier's Correspondence shows that the State was named 
after Franklin. Inasmuch as Allison claims to have searched 
eourt records, etc., his dates, etc., are here followed. 


in no small degree, to the habits and occupations 
of the Indians. Cut off from tools, furniture, 
clothing, and other manufactured articles such as 
civilized men use, he has been driven to such sub- 
stitutes as he could produce by bringing his intel- 
ligence to bear on the processes and materials used 
by the Indians. Living where game is abundant, 
and where the forests make agriculture difficult, 
he has often sunk back to the verge of the hunt- 
ing stage of civilization. 1 The pioneers, so much 
lauded in song and story, were men who first broke 
the path into the wilderness, but who derogated 
from the status of their race to do it. They became 
incapacitated for the steady labor of civilized in- 
dustry, and when the country became so filled up 
that game was scarce, agriculture a necessity, and 
" law " began to be recognized and employed, the 
pioneers moved on into the wilderness. - In their 
habits they were idle and thriftless, and almost 
always too fond of strong drink. The class of 
settlers who succeeded them were but little better 
in their habits, although they began to clear the 
forests and till the soil. They were always very 

1 See Collins's Kentucky, Putnam's Middle Tennessee, Ford's Il- 
linois, and Kendall's Jackson, 74. To " indianize " was a current 
term for this social phenomenon. The worst manifestation of it 
was the adoption of the custom of scalping, and the acts of 
legislation by which bounties were offered for scalps, even for 
those of women and children. During the war of the Revolution 
there were, in the mountains of East Tennessee, white people 
" more savage than the Indians. They possess every one of their 
vices but not one of their virtues." 2 Hanger. 404. 


litigious. Court day was an occasion which drew 
the men to the county town, forming an event in 
a monotonous existence, and offering society to 
people oppressed by isolated life. This concourse 
of people furnished occasion for gossip and news- 
mongering, and the discussion of the affairs of 
everybody for miles around. "Public opinion" 
took control of everything. Local quarrels in- 
volved the whole county sooner or later. Friend- 
ships, alliances, feuds, and animosities grew up 
and were intensified in such a state of society. If 
there was an election pending, the same concourse 
of people furnished an opportunity for speech-mak- 
ing and argument. The institution of "stump- 
speaking" was born and developed in these cir- 
cumstances. In the court itself the parties to the 
suits and the jury enjoyed a place before the public 
eye. The judge and the counsel made reputation 
day by day. The lawyers, as actual or prospective 
candidates for office, were directly and constantly 
winning strength with the electors. They passed 
from the bar to the stump or the tavern parlor, 
and employed the influence which their eloquence 
had won in the court room to advance the in- 
terests which they favored in the election. There 
are features of American democracy which are 
inexplicable unless one understands this frontier 
society. Some of our greatest political abuses 
have come from transferring to our now large and 
crowded cities maxims and usages which were con- 
venient and harmless in backwoods county towns. 


Another feature of the frontier society which it 
is important to notice is, that in it the lack of 
capital and the intimacy of personal relations led 
to great abuses of credit. Idleness, drink, debt, 
and quarrels produced by gossip have been the 
curses of such society. The courts and the lawyers 
were always busy with the personal collisions which 
arose where no one was allowed to practise any 
personal reserve, where each one's business was 
everybody's business, where gossip never rested, 
and where each one was in debt to some others. 

In such a state of society the public prosecutor 
is the general of the advancing army of civiliza- 
tion. He has to try to introduce law and order, 
the fulfilment of contracts, and the recognition of 
rights into the infant society. This was the task 
which Jackson undertook in Tennessee. It re- 
quired nerve and vigor. The western counties of 
North Carolina were in a state of anarchy, resulting 
from the attempt to set up the State of Franklin, 
and the population were so turbulent and lawless 
that the representative of legal order was at open 
war with them. There had been civil war in the 
district for four years. 

The proceedings by which the State of Franklin 
was brought into existence were suggested and 
carried out upon principles and notions which can 
only be characterized as squatterism. The colo- 
nists at the outset, especially those of New Eng- 
land, took their stand on squatterism, without re- 
flection or question. The primary standpoint or 


view on which it rests is the notion that a group 
of people who find themselves in what the New 
Englanders called a " vacuum domicilium " (put- 
ting it in Latin to give it emphasis since it lacked 
contents) may hold a mass meeting, and create a 
state, without regard to the jurisdiction of some 
political body already existing, which has historical 
and legal authority over the territory in which they 
are. Many conflicts arose in the colonial history 
from the collision between squatterism and con- 
stituted authority, and three or four very important 
cases have occurred in the federal history. 1 Frank- 
lin was the first. The conflict is always attended 
by big declarations about " liberty " on the part of 
the squatters, and when they are forced to submit 
to law and constitutional order, great irritation is 
sure to be produced. 

The Indians and whites were also engaged in 
the final struggle of the former before yielding 
their hunting-grounds to the cultivation of the 
white man. Jackson had to travel up and down 
the country in the discharge of his duties, when he 
was in danger of his life upon the road. He 
brought all the required force and virtue to the 
discharge of the duties of this office. He pursued 
his way without fear and without relenting. He 
made strong enemies, and he won strong friends. 
Kendall says that Jackson settled at Nashville, 
because the debtors there tried to drive him away, 
he having taken some collection cases. 2 His merits 

1 See p. 446. 2 Kendall's Jackson, 90. 


as prosecutor 1 are vouched for by the fact that 
Governor Blount said of him, in reference to cer- 
tain intruders on Indian lands who were giving 
trouble, " Let the District Attorney, Mr. Jackson, 
be informed. He will be certain to do his duty, 
and the offenders will be punished." 2 ("As to the 
administration of justice in such a society, the colo- 
nial records show how slight were the guarantees 
of civil liberty against popular power. Allison 3 
proves it again in his description of the primitive 
court of Tennessee and its proceedings. ) 

Among the earliest settlers of Middle Tennessee 
(1780) was John Donelson, who had been killed 
by the Indians before Jackson migrated to Tennes- 
see. 4 Jackson boarded with the widow Donelson. 
In the family there were also Mrs. Donelson's 
daughter, Rachel, and the latter' s husband, Lewis 
Robards. Robards, who seems to have been of a 
violent and jealous disposition, had made injurious 
charges against his wife with reference to other 
persons, and he now made such charges with refer- 
ence to Jackson. Robards had been married in 
Kentucky under Virginia law. There was no law 

1 He was appointed district attorney by Washington in 1791, 
after the western counties of North Carolina were ceded. The 
cession was made that the State might no longer be obliged to 
pay expenses incurred in Indian wars, which the western people 
were charged with provoking in order to create claims which the 
eastern counties must pay. Hayward, 214 ; Allison, 26. 

2 Putnam, 351. 

3 Chap. iii. 

4 Putnam, 613 et seq. ; Kirke, 7. 


of divorce in Virginia. Eobards, in 1790, peti- 
tioned the Legislature of Virginia to pass an act 
of divorce in his favor, making an affidavit that 
his wife had deserted him, and was living in adul- 
tery with Jackson. The Legislature of Virginia 
passed an act authorizing the Supreme Court of 
Kentucky to try the case with a jury, and, if the 
facts proved to be as alleged, to grant a divorce. 1 
Robards took no action for two years. September 
27, 1793, he obtained a divorce from the Court of 
Quarter Sessions of Mercer County, Kentucky. 2 
In the mean time, Jackson and Mrs. Robards, upon 
information of the legislative act of 1790, which 
they assumed, or were informed, to be an act of 
divorce, were married at Natchez, in July or Au- 
gust, 1791. In January, 1794, upon hearing of 
the action of the Mercer County Court, they were 
married again. 3 The circumstances of this mar- 
riage were such as to provoke scandal at the time, 
and the scandal, which in the case of a more ob- 
scure man would have died out during thirty years 
of honorable wedlock, came up over and over again 
during Jackson's career. It is plain that Jackson 
himself was to blame for contracting a marriage 
under ambiguous circumstances, and for not pro- 
tecting his own wife's honor by proper precautions, 

1 13 Va. Stat. at Large, 227 ; Dec. 20, 1790. 

2 The decree was for desertion and adultery. It is given in 
full in Truth's Advocate, 17. (1828.) 

8 Telegraph Extra, p. 33. Report of a Jackson committee in 



such as finding out the exact terms of the act of 
the Legislature of Virginia. He clung to this lady 
until her death, with rare single-minded ness and 
devotion, although she was not at all fitted to share 
the destiny which befell him. He cherished her 
memory until his own death in a fashion of high 
romance. An imputation upon her, or a reflection 
upon the regularity of his marriage, always incensed 
him more than any other personal attack. Having 
put her in a false position, against which, as man 
and lawyer, he should have protected her, he was 
afterward led, by his education and the current 
ways of thinking in the society about him, to try 
to heal the defects in his marriage certificate by 
shooting any man who dared to state the truth; 
that said certificate was irregular. 

Jackson was a member of the convention which 
met at Knoxville, January 11, 1796, and framed a 
Constitution for the State of Tennessee. There is 
a tradition that he proposed the name of the river 
as the name of the State. 1 This Constitution estab- 
lished a freehold qualification for voting and hold- 
ing the chief offices, and declared that the people 
of Tennessee had an inalienable right to navigate 
the Mississippi river to its mouth. The federalists 
in Congress opposed the admission of Tennessee, 
because it was a raw frontier community ; but it 
was admitted June 1, 1796. In the autumn Jack- 
son was elected the first federal representative. A 
year later, Blount, one of the senators from Ten- 

1 Ramsey, 655. 


lessee, having been expelled, Jackson was ap- 
pointed senator in his place. He held this position 
only until April, 1798, when he resigned. 

In December, 1796, therefore, at the age of 
thirty, Jackson first came in contact with a society 
as cultivated as that of Philadelphia then was. 
Except for the brief visit to Charleston in 1783, 
above referred to, he had seen no society but that 
of western North Carolina and Tennessee. He 
came to Philadelphia just as the presidential elec- 
tion of 1796 was being decided. Tennessee voted 
for Jefferson, and we may believe that whatever 
political notions Jackson had were Jeffersonian. 
He identified himself with the opposition to Wash- 
ington's administration in the most factious and 
malicious act which it perpetrated, namely, the 
vote against the address to Washington at the 
close of his administration. He and Edward Liv- 
ingston were two out of twelve in the House who 
refused to vote for the address. It is not known 
what Jackson's reasons were. Some refused to 
vote that Washington's administration had been 
wise. Others objected to the hope that Washing- 
ton's example would guide his successors. 1 The 
grounds of objection to the administration were 
Jay's treaty and Hamilton's financial measures. In 
the light of history the " irreconcilable " minority 
which opposed these measures to the bitter end 
must stand condemned. 

1 In 1830 Livingston attempted an elaborate defence of his 
vote. He tried to distinguish between "Washington and his ad- 
ministration. Hunt's Livingston, 340. 


In the Senate, Jackson voted, with only two 
others, against a bill to authorize the President to j 
buy or lease cannon foundries, in view of possible > 
war with France. He voted against a bill to au- 
thorize the arming of merchant ships ; in favor of 
an embargo; against a proviso that the United 
States should not be bound to cancel the Indian 
title to land on behalf of any State. 1 

We know nothing of any activity or interest 
shown by Jackson in any measure save a claim of 
Hugh L. White, and an act to reimburse Tennessee 
for expenses incurred in an Indian war. Tennessee 
thought that the federal government was slow and 
negligent about defending her against the Indians. 
The federal government thought that Tennessee 
was hasty and aggressive towards the Indians. It 
had inherited the burden against which North Car- 
olina had revolted. 2 Jackson secured payment of 
this claim of Tennessee while he was in the House, 
to the great advantage of his popularity at home. 

We must infer from his conduct that he did not 
enjoy political life and did not care for it. He 
certainly did not become engaged in it at all, and he 
formed no ties which he found it hard to break at 
a moment's warning. He does not appear to have 
made much impression upon anybody at Philadel- 
phia. In the "History of the United States in 
1796 " (p. 244) he is quoted for an account of 
the Nickajack expedition, against the Indian strong- 

/ * Annals of Congress ; 5th Congress, I. 485-532. 
2 See p. 11, n. 1. 


hold, in 1794. Gallatin recalled him years after- 
wards as " a tall, lank, uncouth-looking personage, 
with long locks of hair hanging over his face, and 
a cue down his back tied in an eel-skin ; his dress 
singular, his manners and deportment that of a 
rough backwoodsman." 1 Jefferson said of him, in 
1824 : " When I was President of the Senate he 
was a senator, and he could never speak on account 
of the rashness of his feelings. I have seen him at- 
tempt it repeatedly, and as often choke with rage." 2 
There is, however, ample testimony that Jackson, 
later in life, was distinguished and elegant in his 
bearing, when he did not affect roughness and in- 
elegance, and that he was able to command enco- 
miums upon his manners from the best bred ladies 
in the country. 

Jackson was a " Judge of the Superior Courts " 
of Tennessee from 1798 to June 1804. Overton's 
Reports (1 Tennessee) cover this period, but the 
reports are meagre and undated (beginning in 
1791), and those which appear to belong to Jack- 
son's time deal with only petty and unimportant 
cases. It is stated here that he resigned, " having 
been previously appointed a general of the militia." 

While Jackson was on the bench, he and ex-Gov- 
ernor Sevier were in feud with each other. The 
origin of the quarrel is obscure, and not worth 
picking out from the contradictory backwoods gos- 
sip in which it probably originated. It is enough 
to notice that the two men were too much alike in 
1 4 Hildreth, 692. 2 Webster's Corr. 371. 


temper to be pleased with each other. Sevier was 
fifty-seven years old in 1801, and had been a lead- 
ing man in the country for twenty years. Jackson 
was only thirty-four in that year, and a rising man, 
whose success interfered with Sevier's plans for 
himself. In 1802 the field officers of the militia 
tried to elect a major-general. Sevier and Jackson 
were the candidates. The election resulted in a 
tie. The governor, Archibald Roane, who had the 
casting vote, threw it for Jackson. Jackson had 
not taken part in the Nickajack expedition, or 
otherwise done military service, so far as is known, 
except as a private in an Indian fight in 1789. 
On that occasion one of his comrades described 
him as " bold, dashing, fearless, add mad upon his 
enemies." l In 1803 Sevier was elected governor, 
and he and the judge-major-general drew their 
weapons on each other when they met. Each had 
his faction of adherents, and it was only by the 
strenuous efforts of these persons that they were 
prevented from doing violence to each other. Ken- 
dall says that Jackson's popularity was increased 
by his quarrel with Sevier. 2 Parton gives letters 
of Jackson from this period which are astonishingly 
illiterate for a man in his position, even when all 
the circumstances are taken into consideration. 
Jackson was made a trustee of the Nashville Acad- 
emy in 1793. 3 

He wanted to be made governor of the Territory 
of Orleans after the purchase, and the Tennessee 

l Putnam, 318. 2 Kendall's Jackson, 108. 3 Putnam, 410. 


delegation urged Jefferson to appoint him. A 
letter from William Henderson of Sumner County, 
Tennessee, has been published, which was written 
to dissuade the President from this appointment. 
I view him as a man of violent passions, arbitrary 
in his disposition, and frequently engaged in broils 
and disputes. . . . He is a man of talents, and, 
were it not for those despotic principles, he might 
be a useful man." l 

In 1804 Jackson was once more a private citizen, 
a planter, and a store-keeper. Neither politics nor 
law had apparently touched any chord of interest 
in him. The turning point in his career was the 
vote which made him major-general of militia, but 
the time had not yet arrived for him to show that 
all there was in him could be aroused when there 
were public enemies to be crushed. He Lad been 
engaged in trade for six years or more before 1804, 
and was now embarrassed. He devoted himself to 
business for several years. 

Mention has already been made of the gen- 
eral abuse of credit in the frontier communities. 
Money is scarce because capital is scarce, and is so 
much needed that the community is unwilling to 
employ any of it in securing a value currency. Ir 
is true that the people always have to pay for a 
value currency, whether they get it or not, but they 
always cheat themselves with the notion that cheap 
money is cheap. Food and fuel are abundant, but 
everything else is scarce and hard to get Hopes 

N. Y. Time*, Dee. 26, 18W. 


are strong and expectations are great. Each man 
gives his note, which is a draft on the glorious 
future ; that is, every man makes his own currency 
as he wants it, and the freedom with which he 
draws his drafts is as unlimited as his own sanguine 
hopes. The hopes are not unfounded, but their 
fruition is often delayed. Continued renewals be- 
come necessary, and liquidation is put off until no 
man knows where he stands. A general liquida- 
tion, with a period of reaction and stagnation, 
therefore, ensues upon any shock to credit. In 
Tennessee, between 1790 and 1798, land was used 
as a kind of currency ; prices were set in it, and it 
was transferred in payment for goods and services. 
During the same period there was a great specula- 
tion in new land throughout the country. Prices 
of land were inflated, and extravagant notions of 
the value of raw land prevailed. After the crisis 
of 1798, land fell in value all over the country, to 
the ruin of thousands of speculators. Values mea- 
sured in land all collapsed at the same time. Jack- 
son was entangled in the system of credit and land 
investments, but he seems to have worked out of 
his embarrassments during the next three or four 
years, after which he abandoned trade and became 
a planter only. 

Another feature of this early southwestern fron- 
tier society which excites the surprise and contempt 
of the modern reader is, that store-keepers and 
farmers and lawyers, who lived by their labor, and 
had wives and children dependent on them, are 


found constantly quarrelling, and in all their quar- 
rels are found mouthing the " code of honor." The 
earlier backwoodsmen quarrelled and fought as 
above described, but they fought with fists and 
knives, on the spur of the moment, as the quarrel 
arose. It was a genteel step in advance, and 
marked a new phase of society, when the code of 
the pistol came into use, and the new higher social 
caste prided itself not a little on being "gentle- 
men," because they kept up in the backwoods a 
caricature drawn by tradition and hearsay from 
the manners of the swaggerers about the courts of 
France and England a century before. Andrew 
Jackson was a child of this society, an adherent of 
its doctrines, and in his turn a propagandist and 
expounder of them. He proved himself a quarrel- 
some man. Instead of making peace he exhausted 
all the chances of conflict which offered themselves. 
He was remarkably genial and gentle when things 
went on to suit him, and when he was satisfied 
with his companions. He was very chivalrous 
about taking up the cause of any one who was 
unjustly treated and was dependent. Yet he was 
/Combative, and pugnacious, and over-ready to ad- 
jjust himself for a hostile collision whenever there 
/was any real or fancied occasion. The society in 
^ which he lived developed, by its fashions, some of 
s natural faults. 

In 1795 he fought a duel with a fellow lawyer 
named Avery, over some sparring which had taken 
place between them in a court room, when they 


were opposing counsel. His quarrel with Sevier 
has been mentioned. While on the bench he also 
quarrelled with his old friend Judge McNairy, on 
account of an appointment made by the judge 
which injured an old friend of both. 1 In 1806 he 
fought a duel with Charles Dickinson, who had 
spoken disparagingly of Mrs. Jackson in the course 
of a long quarrel which involved, besides Jackson, 
three or four others, and which was a capital speci- 
men of the quarrels stirred up by the gossip and 
backbiting of men who had too much leisure. This 
was the real cause of Jackson's anger, although on 
the surface the quarrel was about a strained and 
artificial question of veracity concerning a bet on 
a horse-race, and it was inflamed by some sarcastic 
letter-writing in the local newspaper, and by some 
insulting epithets. Jackson's friends declared that 
there was a plot to drive Jackson out of the coun- 
try. Each man meant to kill the other. They 
met May 30, 1806. Jackson was wounded by a 
bullet which grazed his breast and weakened him 
for life. Dickinson was mortally wounded, and 
died the same evening. Jackson told General Hard- 
ing that he was afraid of Dickinson, who was a 
good shot. He also affirmed that he had not an 
ungovernable temper, but often pretended that he 
had, for effect. 2 Many persons who were intimate 
with him later believed that this was true. 

Jackson had made the acquaintance of Burr 

1 Kendall's Jackson, 105. 

2 2 Southern Bivouac, 667. 


when in Congress. In 1805 Burr visited Jackson, 
and made a contract with him for boats for the 
expedition down the Mississippi. The people of 
Kentucky and Tennessee had always regarded it 
as a vital interest of theirs to have the free naviga- 
tion of the Mississippi. They believed that all 
Indian hostilities were incited by the Spaniards at 
New Orleans. 1 So long as a foreign power held 
the mouth of the river, plots were formed for sep- 
arating the trans- Alleghany country from the At- 
lantic States, the strength of which plots lay in 
the fact that the tie of interest which made the 
basis of a union with the holder of New Orleans 
was stronger than the tie of interest which united 
the two sidea. of the Alleghanies. 2 In 1795 the 
United States by treaty with Spain secured a right 
of deposit at New Orleans for three years, and 
these separation plots lost all their strength. The 
" Annual Register " for 1796 (anti-federalist) very 
pertinently pointed out to the western people the 
advantages they enjoyed from the Union. " If 
they had been formed into an independent republic, 
the court of Madrid would have scorned to grant 
such a free navigation " 3 (i. e., as it granted in 
the treaty of 1795). Spain ceded Louisiana to 
France by the secret treaty of St. Ildefonso, Octo- 
ber 1, 1800. This treaty became known in 1802 
after the peace of Amiens. In the same year 

1 Haywood's Tennessee, passim ; Allison, 91. 

2 Butler's Kentucky, chap, xi ; Allison, 89, 92. 
8 Ann. Eeg. (1796) p. 83. 


Spain, which still held possession of Louisiana, 
withdrew the right of deposit, and the western 
country was thrown into great excitement. In 
1803 the whole matter of the navigation of the 
Mississippi was settled by the purchase of Louis- 
iana by the United States, but then a new set 
of questions was opened. In the treaty of 1795 
Spain had acknowledged the parallel of 31 as the 
boundary of Florida from the Mississippi to the 
Chattahoochee, although she had been slow about 
surrendering posts held by her north of this line 
and east of *the Mississippi. Hence there had been 
complaints and bad feeling. Now a new question 
arose as to how far Louisiana extended east of the 
Mississippi river, and this question was of great 
importance to the Gulf territories, because if, by 
the Louisiana purchase, the United States had 
become owner of the territory east as far as thr 
Perdido, then the Gulf coast, with the valuable 
harbor of Mobile, was available for the whole 
Southwest. Spain denied that Louisiana included 
anything east of the Mississippi except the city of 
New Orleans, and the bit of territory south and 
west of the Iberville and the two lakes. 1 The 
territory remained in dispute, and the relations 
between the two countries continued to be bad, 
until Florida was purchased in 1819. In 1802 a 
treaty was made with Spain for the payment by 
her of claims held by American citizens, but Spain 

1 See the decision of the Supreme Court of the United States 
in Foster v. Neilson, 2 Peters, 253. 


did not ratify the treaty until 1818. She had her 
grievances also, at first about Miranda's expedition, 
and afterwards about aid to her revolted colonies. 
In 1810 the President ordered the Governor of 
Orleans to occupy the territory as far as the Per- 
dido, and to hold it in peace and order, subject to 
the final decision of the pending controversy with 
Spain. In 1812, Congress, by two acts, divided 
the country east as far as the Perdido into two 
parts, and added one part to Louisiana, which was 
admitted as a State, and the other part to the 
Mississippi territory. 

It has seemed convenient to pursue these pro- 
ceedings up to this point, because future reference 
to them will be necessary. To return now to 
Burr and his expedition : It will be understood 
what were the relations of the United States to 
Spain in 1805 and 1806, and especially what part 
of those relations peculiarly affected the people of 
the Southwest at that time. Their collisions with 
Spain no longer concerned New Orleans, but Wesf 
Florida and Mobile. It is still a mystery what 
Burr really intended. 1 Napoleon's career had fired 
the imagination of men of a military and romantic 
turn all over the world. It is quite as reasonable 
an explanation of Burr's scheme as any other that 
he was reserving all his chances, and meant to do 
much or little, according to the turn of events, 
and that he did not himself define to himself what 
he was aiming at. His project had an unmistak- 

1 Safford's Blennerhasset ; 2 Amer. Whig Bei\ No. 2. 


able kinship with the old plans for setting up a 
republic of the Mississippi, with its capital at New 
Orleans. 1 For that, however, he was ten years too 
late. If he had intended to go on a filibustering 
expedition against the Spaniards in Mexico, he 
would have obtained secret aid and sympathy in 
Kentucky and Tennessee, and the aid which he 
did get was given under that belief. 2 If his scheme , 
was aimed in any manner against the United States 
he could not find any aid for it. Since the pur- 
chase of Louisiana, and the accession to power in 
the Union of the party to which the great majority 
of the western people belonged, there was no feel- 
ing for Burr to work on. 3 

In 1805 Burr found a cordial welcome and aid. 
He was evidently trying to use Jackson without 
startling him. His letter of March 24, 1806, which 
Parton gives, 4 is a very crafty letter, for the pur- 
pose of engaging Jackson's name and influence to 
raise troops for his enterprise without defining it. 
In 1806 Burr was again in Nashville. His pro- 
ceedings then aroused suspicion. It appears that 
Jackson was mystified. He did not know whether 
he ought to aid Burr or oppose him, or aid him 
secretly and oppose him openly. It seems to be 
very clear, however, that he took sides against 
Burr, if Burr was against the United States. Jan- 

1 2 Wilkinson, 196 ; Gayarre, Louisiana under Spanish Domzn- 
ion ; 2 Pickett, ch. xxix. 

2 2 Amer. Beg. (1807) 103, note. 

3 Cf . Jefferson's Message of January 22, 1807. 

4 1 Parton, 313. 


uary 15th he wrote to Campbell, member of the 
House of Representatives, and gave November as 
the time when he first heard of a plan to seize 
New Orleans, conquer Mexico, carry away the 
Western States, and set up a great empire. 1 He 
says that he was indignant at being the dupe of 
such an enterprise, and that he called Burr to 
account. Burr denounced and ridiculed the notion 
that he intended anything hostile to the United 
States. 2 He claimed to have the secret countenance 
of the Secretary of War. It seems that Jackson 
must have been convinced afterwards that Burr 
had been calumniated and unjustly treated. He 
was at Richmond as a witness in Burr's trial. 
He there made a public speech against Jefferson. 
Jackson had previously been ill-disposed towards 
Jefferson because Jefferson did not give him the 
office of Governor of Orleans. Jackson's strong 
personal contempt and dislike for General Wilkin- 
son, the commander at New Orleans, who appeared 
as Burr's accuser, also influenced his judgment. 3 
Throughout his life he was unable to form an un- 
biassed opinion on a question of fact or law, if he 
had any personal relations of friendship or enmity 
with the parties. 

From 1806 to 1811 Jackson appears to have led 

1 Telegraph Extra, 481 et seq. 

2 When Burr was arrested in Kentucky he gave his word of 
honor to his counsel that he intended nothing against the United 
States. Kendall's Jackson, 120. 

3 His hatred of Wilkinson was greatly strengthened after- 
wards, but he shows it, and the influence of it, in his letter to 


the life of a planter without any noticeable incident. 
The next we hear of him, however, he is committing 
another act of violence. Silas Dinsmore, the In- 
dian agent, refused to allow persons to pass through 
the Indian country with negroes, unless they had 
passports for the negroes. It was his duty by law 
to enforce this rule. There were complaints that 
negroes ran away or were stolen. His -regulation, 
however, interfered with the trade in negroes. This 
trade was then regarded as dishonorable. It has 
been charged that Jackson was engaged in it, and \ 
the facts very easily bear that color. He passed : 
through the Indian country with some negroes 
without hindrance, because Dinsmore was away, 
but he took up the quarrel with the agent, and 
wrote to Campbell to tell the Secretary of War 
that, if Dinsmore was not removed, the people of 
West Tennessee would burn him in his own agency. 
There is a great deal of fire in the letter, and not 
a little about liberty and free government. 1 Dins- 
more was suspended, and things took such a turn 
that he lost his position and was reduced to pov- 
erty. Parton gives a story of an attempt by Dins- 
more, eight years later, to conciliate Jackson. This 
attempt was dignified, yet courteous and becoming. 
Jackson repelled it in a very brutal and low-bred 
manner. Dinsmore did not know until 1828, when 
he was a petitioner at Washington, and the papers 
were called for, that Jackson had been the cause 
of his ruin. 2 

1 34 NQes, 110. 2 8 Adams, 61. 


The time was now at hand, however, when An- 
drew Jackson would have a chance to show how he 
could serve his country. At the, q,ge of forty-five 
he had commenced no career. He was a promi- 
nent man in his State, but he had held no political 
offices in it, and had not, so far as we know, been 
active in any kind of public affairs, although we 
infer that he had discharged all his duties as gen- 
eral of militia. He had shown himself a faithful 
friend and an implacable enemy. Every man who 
has this character is self-centred. He need not be 
vain or conceited. Jackson was not vain or con- 
ceited. He never showed any marked selfishness. 
He had a great deal of amour propre. All things 
which interested him at all took on some relation 
to his person, and he engaged his personality in 
everything which interested him. An opinion or a 
prejudice became at once for him a personal right 
and interest. To approve it and further it was 
to win his gratitude and friendship. To refute or 
oppose it was to excite his animosity. There was 
an intensity and vigor about him which showed 
lack of training. His character had never been 
cultivated by the precepts and discipline of home, 
or by the discipline of a strict and close society, in 
which extravagances of behavior and excess of 
amour propre are promptly and severely restrained 
by harsh social penalties. There is, to be sure, a 
popular philosophy that home breeding and culture 
are of no importance. The fact, however, is not to 
be gainsaid that true honor, truthfulness, suppres- 


sion of undue personal feeling, self-control, and 
courtesy are inculcated best, if not exclusively, by 
the constant precept and example, in earliest child- 
hood, of high-bred parents and relatives. There is 
nothing on earth which it costs more labor to pro- 
duce than a high-bred man. It is also indisputable 
that home discipline and training ingrain into the- 
character of men the most solid and valuable ele- 
ments, and that, without such training, more civili- 
zation means better food and clothes rather than 
better men. It is characteristic of barbarians to 
put their personality always at stake, and not to 
distinguish the man who disputes their notions 
from the man who violates their rights. It is pos- 
sible, however, that the military virtues may flour- 
ish where moral and social training are lacking. 
Jackson was unfortunate in that the force ofTnsT 
will and the energy of his executive powers had 
never been disciplined, but the outbreak of the 
second war with England afforded him an arena on 
which his faults became virtues. 


IN no place in the world was Napoleon more 
ardently admired than in the new States of this 
country. The popular enthusiasm about him in 
those States lasted long after he was rated much 
more nearly at his true value everywhere else in 
the world. The second war with England was 
brought on by the policy, the opinions, and the 
feelings of the South and West, represented by 
a young and radical element in the Jeffer* 
party. The opinion in the South and W( 
1811 and 1812, was that Napoleon was 
unite the Continent for an attack on EnglajB 
which he was sure to succeed, and that hn 
thus become master of Europe and the world. 
It was thought that it would be well to bejf at 
the death on his side. It is not necessary to point 
out in any detail the grounds for this opinion'Shich 
might have been put forward at that time, m to 
show the partial and distorted information on \ILieh 
it was founded. It is certain that the persons who 
held this notion were very ill-informed on Euro- 
pean politics, and their opinions were strongly 
biassed by party conflicts at home. For twenty 

mted by 
V^el in 
aboui to 


years the domestic politics of the United States 
had been organized on sympathy with one or the 
other of the belligerent parties in Europe. This 
country was weak in a military point of view, but 
commercially it would have been a great advantage 
to either belligerent to have free intercourse with 
the United States, and to keep his enemy from it. 
The English policy towards the United States 
was arrogant and insolent. That of France was 
marked by duplicity and chicanery. Party spirit 
here took possession of the people to such an ex- 
tent that the federalists made apology for any 
injury from England, no matter how insolent, and 
the democrats could not see any wrong in the acts 
of Napoleon, in spite of the evident fact that he 
was using this country for his own selfish purposes 
cajoling it with shameless lies. The course 
le weak neutral between two such belligerents 
Lvery difficult. 

jhington succeeded in maintaining neutrality 
treaty, but at the cost of bitter hostility 
. Adams was driven to the verge of war 
"ranee by his party, but succeeded in avert- 
r, although his party was destroyed by the 
Jefferson cannot be said to have had 
>lan. The statesmen of his party tried to act 
belligerents by destructive measures against 
domestic commerce and industry, chastising our- 
selves, as Plumer said, with scorpions, in order to 
beat the enemy with whips. They tried one mea- 
sure after another. No measure had a rational 


origin or effect calculated and adjusted to the cir- 
cumstances of the case. Each was a new blunder. 
The republican rulers in France, in 1792, could do 
nothing better for a man who claimed protection 
from the Jacobin mobs than to put him in prison, 
so that the mob could not get at him. Jefferson's 
embargo offered the same kind of protection to 
American shipping. Before the embargo, mer- 
chants and ship-owners went to sea at great risk 
of capture and destruction ; after it, they stayed 
at home and were sure of ruin. Jefferson has re- 
mained a popular idol, and has never been held to 
the responsibility which belonged to him for his 
measures. The alien and sedition laws were not 
nearly so unjust and tyrannical 1 as the laws for en- 
forcing the embargo, and they did not touch one 
man where the embargo laws touched hundreds. 
The commercial war was a device which, if it had 
been sensible and practical, would have attained 
national ends by sacrificing one group of interests 
and laying a much inferior burden on others. New 
England was denounced for want of patriotism be- 
cause it resisted the use of its interests for national 
purposes, but as soon as the secondary effects of 
the embargo on agriculture began to be felt, the 
agricultural States raised a cry which overthrew 
the device. Yet criticisms which are justified by 
the most conclusive testimony of history fall harm- 
lessly from Jefferson's armor of popular platitudes 

1 See Carey's Olive Branch, page 50, for the opinion of a demo- 
crat on these laws after party spirit had cooled down. 


and democratic sentiments. He showed the traits 
which we call womanish. He took counsel of his 
feelings and imagination ; he planned measures like 
the embargo, whose scope and effect he did not un- 
derstand. He was fiery when deciding initiatory 
steps, like the rejection of the English treaty ; vacil- 
lating and timid when he had to adopt measures 
for going forward in the path which he had chosen. 
His diplomacy, besides .being open to the charge 
that it was irregular and unusual, was transparent 
and easily turned to ridicule. It was a diplomacy 
without lines of reserve or alternatives, so that, 
in a certain very possible contingency, it had no 
course open to it. Jefferson finally dropped the 
reins of government in despair, and, on a theory 
which would make each presidential term last for 
three years and eight months, with an interregnum 
of four months, he left the task to his successor. 
He had succeeded in keeping out of war with 
either belligerent, but he had shaken the Union to 
its foundations. The extremists in the democratic 
party now came forward, and began to push Madi- 
son into a war with England, as the extreme fede- 
ralists had pushed Adams into war with France. 
Madison, therefore, had to inherit the consequences 
of Jefferson's policy. An adherent of Jefferson de- 
scribes the bequest as follows : " Jefferson's honest 
experiment, bequeathed to Madison, to govern 
without army or navy, and resist foreign enemies 
without war, proved total failures, more costly than 


war and much more odious to the people, and dan- 
gerous to the Union." 1 

The young and radical democrats, amongst whom 
Clay was prominent, were restive under the pre- 
dominance of the older generation of democrats 
of revolutionary fame, and their favorites. The 
young democrats wanted to come forward without 
the patronage of the Virginia leaders. The presi- 
dential election of 1812 was the immediate occasion 
of their action. The Jeffersonian policy had pro- 
duced irritation at home and humiliation abroad. 
The natural consequence was a strong war spirit. 
It was believed that the country would not really 
be engaged in military operations, because England 
would be fully occupied in Europe ; that Canada 
could be conquered ; that we should come in on 
the winning side at the catastrophe of the great 
conflict in Europe ; and that all this would be very 
popular in the South and West. Madison was 
compelled greatly against his will to yield to the 
war party, as a condition of his reelection. 2 Eng- 
land pointed out that Napoleon had not complied 
with the terms of the American demands on both 
belligerents, but had falsified a date and told a 
lie. She withdrew her orders in council, and there 
remained only impressment as the ostensible cause 
of war. September 12, 1812, Admiral Warren 
offered an armistice. Madison refused it unless 
the practice of impressment was suspended. War- 

1 Ingersoll, 70. 

2 Statesman's Manual, 348. 1 Colton's Clay, 161. 


ren had not power to agree to this. For purposes 
of redress the war was, therefore, unnecessary, and 
the United States was duped into it by Napoleon, 
so far as its avowed causes were concerned. 1 

General Jacksgn. .pffcrad frifi, .TOIUffift,, with A n i ga 
of 2JJOQ volunteers, as soon as he heard of the 

^tMtir-^- ' 

declaration of war. January 7, 1813, he set out 
under orders for few Orleans, an attack on that 
place being regarded as a probable movement of 
the enemy. Jackson threw himself into the busi- 
ness with all his might, and ajLonce^ displayed 
activity, vigilance, and skill. His letter to the 
Secretary of "War when he started shows with what 
enthusiasm he set to work. He assured the Secre- 
tary that his men had no " constitutional scruples," 
but would, if so directed, plant the American 
eagle on the walls of Mobile, Pensacola, and St. 
Augustine. In March he was at Natchez engaged 
in organizing his force, and waiting for orders. 
While there he had a quarrel with General Wil- 
kinson on a question of rank. - Thomas H. Benton, 
who was serving under Jackson, thought Jackson 
wrong on the point in question. This produced 
discord between him and Jackson. 

Suddenly Jackson received orders to dismiss his 
troops, as it did not appear that the enemy were 
intending to attack New Orleans. He was, of 
course, greatly chagrined at this order. He was 
also enraged at the idea of disbanding his men, 
without pay or rations, five hundred miles from 
1 See 1 GaUatin's Writings, 517; 2 ditto, 196, 211, 499. 


home, to find their way back as best they could. 
A subsequent order repaired part of this error by 
ordering pay and rations, but Jackson hired trans- 
portation on his own responsibility, and marched 
his men home in a body. Thomas H. Benton, in 
June following, succeeded in obtaining from the 
federal authorities reimbursement of the expenses 
which Jackson had incurred. 

This act of Benton would perhaps have extin- 
guished the memory of the trouble about rank at 
Natchez, but, in the mean time, Jackson had stood 
second to another maaJn a duel with JejsffiBe.nton, 
brother of Thomas. A feud was speedily created 
out of this by the gossip and tale-bearing already 
described. Up to this time Jackson had had as 
many enemies as friends, but his course in leading 
home the troops from Natchez had made him very 
popular. His conduct in acting as second in the 
duel, although chivalrous in one point of view, was 
overbearing in another. He threatened to horse- 
whip Thomas Benton, and jLjrencontre Between him 
and the two brothers took place-in-^,, iavern at 
Nashville. Blows and shet& were exchanged, and 
Jackson came away with a ball in his shoulder, 
which he carried for twenty years. This affair 
occurred SeptemberjljJ13.i;. 

The great Inclfan chief Tecumseh had been try- 
ing for years to unite all the red men against the 
whites. 2 There would have been an Indian war if 
there had been no war with England, but the latter 

1 Cf. 1 Sargent, 225. 2 Drake's Tecumseh. 


war seemed to be Tecumseh's opportunity. Among 
the southwestern Indians he found acceptance only 
with the Creeks, who were already on the verge of 
civil war, because some wanted to adopt civilized 
life, and others refused. 1 The latter became the 
war party, under Weatherford, a very able half- 
breed chief. The first outbreak in the Southwest, 
although there had been some earlier hostilities, 
was the massacre of the garrison and refugees at 
Fort Mims, at the junction of the Alabama and 
Tombigbee rivers, August 30, 1813. There were 
553 persons in the fort, of whom only five or six 
escaped. 2 If Tecumseh had lived, and if the Eng- 
lish had been able to give their attention to an 
alliance with him, he would have united the In- 
dians from the Lakes to the Gulf, and the " young 
democrats" would have found out what sort of a 
business it may be to start a war for party effect. 
The result of the massacre at Fort Mims was that 
Alabama was almost abandoned by whites. Terror 
and desire for revenge took possession of Georgia 
and Tennessee. September 25th, the Tennessee 
Legislature voted to raise men and money to aid 
the people of the Mississippi territory against the 
Creeks. Jackson was still confined to his bed by 
the wound which Benton had given him. He and 
Cocke were the two major-generals of the militia 
of Tennessee. They concerted measures. As soon 
as he possibly could, Jackson took .the field. Geor- 

1 Folio State Papers, 1 Indian Affairs, 845 fg. 

2 2 Pickett, 266. 


gia had a force in the field under General Floyd. 
General Claiborne was acting at the head of troops 
from Louisiana and Mississippi. This Indian war 
had a local character and was outside the fed- 
eral operations, although in the end it had a great 
effect upon them. Up to this time little had been 
known at Washington of Jackson, save that he 
had been a friend of Burr, an enemy of Jefferson, 
and that he had just acted in a somewhat in- 
subordinate manner at Natchez, reflecting on the 
administration and winning popularity for himself. 
The Creek war l was remarkable for three things : 
(1) the quarrels between the generals, and the 
want of concert of action ; (2) lack of provisions ; 
(3) insubordination in the ranks. Partly on ac- 
count of the lack of provisions, for which he blamed 
General Cocke (as it appears, unjustly), Jackson 
fell into a bitter quarrel with his colleague and 
junior officer. The lack of provisions, and con- 
sequent suffering of the men, was one cause of 
insubordination in the ranks, but the chief cause 
was differences as to the term of enlistment. The 
enlistment was generally for three months, and 
constant recruiting was necessary to keep up the 
army in the field. A great deal of nonsense has 
been written and spoken about pioneer troops. 
Such troops were always insubordinate 2 and home- 

1 See Eaton's Jackson and Pickett's Alabama. On Tecumseh 
and the Prophet see Smithsonian Eep. 1885, Pt. ii. p. 200. The 
Prophet is described there as a vain sneak. 

2 See descriptions of Kentucky militia in Kendall's Autobio- 


sick, and very dependent for success on enthusiasm 
for their leader and a prosperous course of affairs. 
For these reasons the character of the commander 
was all-important to such an army. On three oc- 
casions Jackson had to use one part of his army to 
prevent another part from marching home, he and 
they differing on the construction of the terms of 
enlistment. He showed very strong qualities under 
these trying circumstances. He endured delay with 
impatience, but with fortitude, and without a sug- 
gestion of abandoning the enterprise, 1 although he 
was in wretched health all the time. He managed 
his soldiers with energy and tact. He understood 
their dispositions. He knew how to be severe with 
them without bringing them to open revolt, and 
he knew how to make the most efficacious appeals 
to them. 

In the conduct of the movements against the 
enemy his energy was very remarkable. So long 
as there was an enemy unsubdued Jackson could 
not rest, and could not give heed to anything else. 
Obstacles which lay in the way between him and 
such unsubdued enemy were not allowed to deter 
him. This restless and absorbing determination 
to^ reach and crush anything which was hostile was 
one of the most marked traits in Jackson's charac- 

graphy, 124, 131, and description of a muster and training in 2 
Lambert's Travels, 192. The western soldiers of this period re- 
semble very closely the colonial troops of 60 or 70 years before. 

1 To Governor Blount, who proposed that he should retire from 
the expedition, Jackson wrote a strenuous remonstrance, even an 
admonition. Eaton's Jackson, 101. 


ter. It appeared in all his military operations, 
and he carried it afterwards into his civil activity. 
Qe_ succeeded in his notary TYinvftmftnfo. This 

The young men of the State then hastened to enlist 
with him, and his ranks were kept well filled, be- 
cause one who had fought a campaign with him, 
and had a story to tell, became a hero in the settle- 
ment. Jackson's military career and his popularity 
thus rapidly acquired momentum from all the cir- 
cumstances of the case and all the forces at work. 
He was then able to enforce discipline and obedi- 
ence, by measures which, as it seems, no other 
frontier commander would have dared to use. 

On the 14th of March, 1814, he ordered John 
Wood to be shot for insubordination and assault 
on an officer. This was the first of the acts of 
severity committed by Jackson as a commanding 
officer, which were brought up against him in the 
presidential campaigns when he was a candidate. 
Wood was technically guilty. He acted just as 
any man in the frontier army, taught to reverence 
nobody and submit to no authority, would have 
acted under the circumstances. If it had not been 
for the great need of enforcing discipline, ex- 
tenuating circumstances which existed would have 
demanded a -mitigation of the sentence. Party 
newspapers during a presidential campaign are not 
a fair court of appeal to review the acts which a 
military commander in the field may think neces- 
sary in order to maintain discipline. Jackson 


showed in this case that he was not afraid to do 
his duty, and that he would not sacrifice the public 
service to curry popularity. 

At the end of March, Jackson destroyed a body 
of the Creeks at Tohopeka, or Horse-Shoe Bend, 
in the northeast corner of the present Tallapoosa 
County, Alabama. With the least possible delay 
he pushed on to the last refuge of the Creeks, 
the Hickory Ground, at the confluence of the 
Coosa and Tallapoosa, and the Holy Ground a few 
miles distant. The medicine men, appealing to the 
superstition of the Indians, had taught them to 
believe that no white man could tread the kfcter 
ground and live. In April the remnant of the 
Creeks surrendered or, fled to Florida, overcome 
as much by the impetuous and relentless charac- 
ter of the campaign against them as by actual 
blows. Fort Jackson was built on the Hickory 
Ground. The march down through Alabama was a 
great achievement, considering the circumstances of 
the country at the time. Major-General Thomas 
Pinckney, of the regular army, came to Fort Jack- 
son, April 20th, and took command. He gave 
to Jackson's achievements the most generous re- 
cognition both on the spot and in his reports. 
April 21, 1814, the West Tennessee militia were 
dismissed, and they marched home. 

The Creek campaign lasted only seven months. 
In itself considered, it was by no means an im- 
portant Indian war, but in its connection with 
other military movements it was very important. 


Tecumseh had been killed at the battle of the 
Thames in Canada, October 5, 1813. His scheme 
of a race war died with him. The Creek cam- 
paign put an end to any danger of hostilities from 
the southwestern Indians, in alliance either with 
other Indians or with the English. It was hence- 
forth possible to plan military operations and pass 
through the Indian territory without regard to the 
disposition of the Indians. This state of things 
had been brought about very summarily, while 
military events elsewhere had been discouraging. 

This campaign, therefore, was the beginning of 
Jackson's fame and popularity, and from it dates 
his career. He was forty-seven years old. On 
the 31st of May he was appointed a major-general 
in the army of the United States, aiJthAKas- given 
command of the department of the South. He 
established his headquarters at Mobile in August, 
1814. That town had been occupied by Wilkin- 
son, April 13, 1813. There were fears of an attack 
either on Mobile or New Orleans. English forces 
appeared, and took post at Pensacola. Jackson 
naturally desired to attack the enemy where he 
found him. The relations of the parties must be 
borne in mind. 1 Spain was a neutral and owned 
Florida, but the boundaries of Florida were in 
dispute between Spain and the United States. 
Jackson would not have been a southwestern man 
if he had not felt strongly about that dispute. We 
have seen 2 that one of Jackson's first thoughts, 
1 See page 23. 2 See page 35. 


when war with England broke out, was that Florida 
might be conquered. Now Spain appeared to be 
allowing England to use Florida as a base of opera- 
tions. Jackson wrote to Washington for leave to 
attack Pensacola. It did not suit his temper to 
sit still under a great anxiety as to which spot on 
a long coast might be chosen by the enemy as the 
point of attack. The Secretary of War (Arm- 
strong) replied to Jackson's application that it was 
necessary, before invading Spanish territory, to 
know certainly whether Spain voluntarily yielded 
the use of her territory to England. This letter 
did not reach Jackson until the war was over. All 
Jackson's letters of this period to the State and 
federal* authorities have a tone of lecturing which 
gives deep insight into the character of the man. 
He meant no disrespect, but the case seemed so 
clear to him that he set it forth with an unconscious 
directness of language which violated official forms. 
Jackson had but a very small force at Mobile, 
very inadequately provided with any of the neces- 
saries of war. The government at Washington 
was falling to pieces. On the 24th of August 
the English captured Washington and burned the 
public buildings. Jackson could not obtain either 
assistance or orders. September 14th, the English 
attacked Fort Bowyer, on Mobile Point, and were 
repulsed with energy and good fortune. They 
retired to Pensacola. Jackson advanced against 
Pensacola without orders from Washington, and 
reached that place November 6th, with 3000 men. 


He easily stormed the town. The Spaniards sur- 
rendered the forts near the town. The English 
blew up the fort at Barrancas and departed. 1 Jack- 
son immediately returned to Mobile, fearing a 
new attack there. This energetic action against 
Pensacola, which a timid commander would have 
hesitated to take, although the propriety of it could 
not be seriously questioned, was the second great 
step in the war in the South. If the Creeks had 
not been subdued, Mobile could not have been 
defended. If Pensacola had not been captured, 
New Orleans could not have been defended three 
months later. Jackson had extraordinary luck, but 
he deserved it by his energy and enterprise. All 
the accidents fell out in his favor, and all contri- 
buted to his final success. 

On the 2d of December, 1814, Jackson reached 
New Orleans, where he expected the next blow to 
fall. Nothing had been done there to prepare for 
defence, and no supplies were there, not even 
arms. Edward Livingston and a Frenchman named 
Louaillier were alone active even in preparing 
the minds of the people for defence. Jackson 
declared martial law as a means of impressing sol- 
diers and sailors, and began preparations for de- 
fending the city, in spite of discouragements and 
the lack of all proper means. He seemed to be 
possessed by a kind of frenzy or fanaticism at the 
idea of any one " invading " American territory. 
As soon as he heard of the landing effected by the 
1 7 Niles, 271. Latour, 44 et seq. 


English after they had destroyed the flotilla on the 
lakes, he set out to meet them with such forces as 
he had. He arrested their advance as far from the 
city as possible, pushed on his preparations with 
redoubled energy and activity, and was indefati- 
gable in devising and combining means of defence,, 
" The energy manifested by General Jackson 
spread, as it were, by contagion, and communicated 
itself to the whole army. I shall add, that there 
was nothing which those who composed it did not 
feel themselves capable of performing, if he ordered 
it to be done. It was enough that he expressed a 
wish, or threw out the slightest intimation, and im- 
mediately a crowd of volunteers offered themselves 
to carry his views into execution." l He made the 
utmost of all the means he possessed and devised 
substitutes for what he lacked. He enlisted free 
colored men in spite of the great dissatisfaction 
which this caused. 2 Thus, with every day that' 
passed, his position became stronger. The enemy 
were veteran troops, amply provided with all the 
best appliances of war, but, as it appears, not well 
commanded. An energetic advance on their part, 
at the first moment, would have won the city. It 
was, however, Jackson who made the energetic ad- 
vance at the first moment, and he never let them 
get any farther. 

Both parties courted the alliance of the pirates 
of Barataria. When the English made the first 
overtures, Jackson denounced them for seeking 

1 Latour, Preface, p. 17. 2 Gayarre', 359, 409, 505. 


alliance with " pirates and hellish banditti." The 
pirates thought that their interest lay with the 
Americans and joined them. Then Jackson called 
them " privateers and gentlemen." In the Amer- 
ican histories they have generally been lauded as 
" patriots." Jackson's proclamations were bom- 
bastic imitations of those of Napoleon. It is not 
known who wrote the earlier ones. Some of his 
later ones, at New Orleans, are attributed to Liv- 

The story of the battle which took place is a 
strange one. Everything fell out favorably for 
Jackson as if by magic. The English lost their 
way, fired into each other, adopted foolish rumors, 
disobeyed orders, neglected precautions. The two 
parties built redoubts out of the same mud, and 
cannonaded each other all day through a dense 
smoke. At night the American works were hardly 
damaged, while the English works were battered 
to pieces and the cannon dismounted. On the 8th 
of January, 1815, the English made their grand 
assault on Jackson's works. Latour says that they 
were over-confident, and that they disregarded the 
obstacles. They were repulsed with great slaughter. 
Their loss in general and field officers was espe- 
cially remarkable. Only on the west bank of the 
river did the English gain some advantage. Gen- 
eral Jackson said then and he always afterwards 
refused to withdraw the assertion, in spite of the 
remonstrances of General Adair, and in spite of a 
1 19 National Magazine, 358 ; Gayarre, 353. 


long controversy that the Kentucky troops on 
the west side " ingloriously fled." l This is worth 
noticing only because it shows that Jackson would 
not recede from what he thought true, either to 
soothe wounded pride or to win popularity. If the 
English had had a little larger force on the west side, 
they would have won that position, and would have 
more than counterbalanced all Jackson's success on 
the east bank, for the batteries on the west bank 
could easily have been made to command Jackson's 
camp and works. The English withdrew after 
their repulse. Their loss, January 8th, was over 
2000 killed, wounded, and missing ; Jackson's was 
seven killed and six wounded. 2 The treaty of 
peace had .been signed at Ghent December 24, 
1814, two weeks before the battle took place. 
Before the English attempted any further opera- 
tions in Louisiana, the news of the peace was re- 
ceived. They captured Fort Bowyer in a second 
attack, February 12, 1815. 

A brilliant victory was the last thing any one in 
the United States had expected to hear of from 
New Orleans. The expectations under which the 
war had been undertaken had all been disap- 
pointed. Canada had not been conquered. The 
United States had ranged itself with the defeated, 

1 7 Niles, 373. Latour, App. 52. Latour makes an apology 
for the Kentuckians, p. 174. 

2 Latour, App. 55, 153. See accounts of the hattle in Cable's 
History of New Orleans, in 10th Census, Social Statist. II, 255 
fg. ; Walker's Jackson ; Gleig's Campaigns, 


and not with the successful party in Europe. The 
war had been more than nominal, but on land it 
had been anything but glorious. Only on the sea 
did the few frigates which the federalists had built, 
while they controlled the federal government, vin- 
dicate the national honor by brilliant successes. 
Jefferson's a priori navy of gunboats had disap- 
peared and been forgotten. The war party had 
looked upon Gallatin as their financier. He had 
told them in 1809 that war could be carried on 
without taxes, but they had squandered, against 
his remonstrances, resources on which he relied 
when he so declared, and they had refused to re- 
charter the Bank as he desired. When the war 
broke out he went to Russia as one of the peace 
commissioners. There was no one competent to 
succeed him, and the democrats never forgave him 
for the embarrassments which they suffered in try- 
ing to manage the finances. 1 He did not resign 
his secretaryship, but was superseded February 9, 
1814. Good democrats thought that sending him 
abroad was a repetition of the course they had 
blamed in Jay's case. 2 It certainly was a very 
strange policy to leave the treasury without a regu- 
lar heal in war-time. The banks suspended, the 
currency fell into confusion, heavy taxation became 
necessary, and the public finances were brought to 
the verge of bankruptcy. The party which had 
made such an outcry about direct taxes, national 

1 See Ingersoll, 74. 

2 Carey's Olive Branch, 63. 


bank, and eight per cent loans, imitated Hamil- 
ton's system of direct taxes and excise throughout. 
They were discussing a big paper-money bank on 
the day (February 13th) when news of the Treaty 
of Ghent reached Washington, and they would 
have adopted it if the war had continued. They 
sold six per cent bonds for eighty and eighty-five 
in a currency of bank rags depreciated twenty or 
twenty-five per cent. A grand conscription bill 
was also in preparation, and the Hartford conven- 
tion had just adjourned, having done much or little 
according as peace or war might make it expedient 
to put one sense or another on ambiguous phrases. 
When Napoleon fell, and England was left free 
to devote her attention to this country as her only 
remaining foe, the war took on a new aspect. June 
13, 1814, Gallatin wrote home that a large force 
was fitting out in England against America. Ad- 
miral Cochrane wrote to Monroe that he had orders 
to devastate the coasts of the United States. The 
first conditions of peace talked of by England in- 
volved cession of territory in Michigan and the 
Ohio territory, as well as concessions of trading 
privileges and navigation of the Mississippi, 
terms which could not be accepted until after a 
great deal more hard fighting. The feeling here 
in the autumn of 1814 was one of deep despond- 
ency and gloom. 1 The victory of New Orleans was 

1 See Niles's Register, vol. 7 ; Pres. Message, 1814 ; 1 Goodrich, 
Letter xxx. ; Carey's Olive Branch, preface 4th and 6th ed. In- 
jersoll finds room for the opinion that the prospects for 1815 were 


the cause of boundless delight, especially because 
the news of it reached the North at just about the 
same time as the news of peace, and there was no 
anxiety about the future to mar the exultation. 
The victory was a great consolation to the national 
pride, which had been sorely wounded by military 
failures, and by the capture of Washington. The 
power of Great Britain had been met and repulsed 
when put forth at its best, and when the American 
resources were scanty and poor. To the adminis- 
tration and the war party the victory was political 
salvation. The public plainly saw, however, that 
the federal administration had done nothing for 
the victory. Jackson had been the soul of the de- 
fence from the beginning, and to his energy and 
perseverance success was due. He therefore got 
all the credit of it, and the administration was only 
too glad to join in the plaudits, since attention was 
thereby diverted from its blunders and failure. 
These facts explain Jackson's popularity. In the 
space of time between September, 1813, and Janu- 
ary, 1815, he had passed from the status of an ob- 
scure Tennessee planter to that of the most dis- 
tinguished and popular man in the country. 

In the treaty of peace nothing was said about 
impressment, the " principle " of which was what 
the United States had- been striving about ever 
since 1806, and which was the only cause of the 
war. The war was therefore entirely fruitless as to 
the causes which were alleged for it at the outset. 
What the course of things might have been, if 


a wiser statesmanship had adopted Monroe and 
Pinkney's treaty, and pursued a steady course of 
peace and industrial growth, so far as the state of 
the world would allow, is a matter of speculation ; 
but, in the course which things did take, there are 
especial and valuable features of our history which 
are to be traced to the second war with England 
as their origin. The discontent of New England 
faded away at onpe, and there was a stronger feel- 
ing of nationality and confidence throughout the 
country than there ever had been before. 1 From 
that time on the Union had less of the character 
of a temporary experiment. The country had also 
won respect abroad, and was recognized in the 
family of nations as it had not been before. From 
1789 to 1815 the European nations were absorbed 
by European politics and war. At the end of this 
period they turned to find that a new nation had 
begun to grow up on the western continent. The 
Americans had shown that they could build ships 
of war, and sail them, and fight them on an equal 
footing. To the military states of Europe this was 
a fact which inspired respect. 

To return to our more immediate subject : There 
had been another dispute about terms of enlist- 
ment at Fort Jackson in September, 1814. About 
200 men, some of whom broke open a store-house 
to get supplies, and indulged in expressions and 
acts of contempt for authority, marched home with- 
out the consent of their commanding officer. Most 

1 Gallatin expressed this opinion. 1 Gallatin's Writings, 700. 


of them came back ; some being compelled, others 
thinking better of it, and others after assuaging 
their homesickness. A large number were put 
under arrest and tried by court-martial. Six were 
condemned to death, and, by Jackson's orders, 
were executed at Mobile, February 21, [?] 1815. 1 
The question of law involved was a difficult one. 
The men took the risk of acting on their own view 
of that question, while they were under military 
law. The tribunal was competent, the law undis- 
puted, and the proceedings regular, but attempts 
were made to make political capital out of the in- 
cident, when Jackson became a candidate. There 
had never been such discipline in an American 
army, 2 least of all in the West. Jackson, and Lewis 
on his behalf, did not avow and defend, although 
some of his adherents did do so, on the ground of 
need of discipline. Lewis denied that Jackson or- 
dered the execution. He wrote, at different times, 
versions of the story which are not strictly accord- 
ant. In 1827 Jackson wrote to Lewis that the 
men were sentenced to be shaved and drummed out 
of camp, but that even this sentence was not to 
be executed. " There was no punishment on any 
one of them inflicted, or my orders were violated." 3 
The formal finding of the court with his approval 

1 From the documents as given in 34 Niles, 55 (1828). Report 
f a Committee of Mie House friendly to Jackson. 

8 Jackson's apologists made much of an alleged parallel case 
fender Washington. 

8 FordMSa 


and order for execution is in 34 Niles, 73. The 
noticeable thing is that, in this case, quite excep- 
tionally, he tried to deny and evade responsibility 
for something which he had done. 

After the English departed from New Orleans 
Jackson relaxed none of his vigilance, but con- 
tinued to strengthen his force by all the means at 
his command. In this he acted like a good and 
wise commander, who did not mean to be caught. 
He could not assume that the enemy would not 
make another attack, and he knew nothing yet of 
the peace. He^ maintained the attitude of alert 
preparation until he was sure that the war was at 
an end. He maintained martial law in the city, 
and he administered it with rigor. Evidently he 
thought that a proclamation of martial law set 
aside the habeas corpus and all civil law. 1 The 
possession of absolute and arbitrary power did not 
have a good effect on him. The exhilaration and 
self-confidence of success and flattery affected his 
acts. It appears that he did not respect all the 
inhabitants of the city ; for which he had ample 
reason. 2 They were a motley crowd, and he thought 
that some of them were not ready to do what he 
thought they ought to do to defend the city. 3 Any 
one who would not go to the last extreme for that 
object could count on Jackson's contempt. He 
meant to hold the city in such shape that he could 

1 Gayarre*, 608 ; Martin, 402. 

2 See Cable's History of New Orleans. 

8 See his defence in reply to Hall's writ, 8 Niles, 246. 


make every man in it contribute to its defence, if 
the occasion should arise. Frenchmen had certain 
privileges for twelve years, under the treaty of 
1803. They had generally cooperated in the de- 
fence, but, after the English departed, they sought 
certificates of nationality in order to secure the 
privileges and exemptions to which they were en- 
titled. To Jackson this seemed like shirking a 


share of the common burdens. Livingston, who 
had been on an embassy to the English fleet, 
brought back news, on the 18th of February, 1 of 
the peace. Jackson would not altgr his attitude or 
proceedings on account of this intelligence, because 
it came through the enemy, although it was trans- 
mitted in a formal and polite note from the Eng- 
lish naval commander, and the English officers 
acted on it. Jackson, in an address to his army, 
said that it was only a newspaper report. It was 
a "bulletin" from Jamaica, dated February 13. 2 
February 24, Governor Claiborne wanted martial 
law abolished. On February 28th, Jackson ordered 
all who had certificates of French nationality to go 
to Baton Rouge before March 3d, on the ground 

1 Latour says on the 10th. This date has been regarded as 
important for the question whether Jackson knew, before he al- 
lowed the six militiamen to be executed, that peace had been 
made. The order for execution was signed at New Orleans, Jan- 
uary 22, and it was to be executed four days after its promulga- 
tion at Mobile. In Dallas's letter to Jackson of April 12, mention 
is made of a letter of Jackson of February 6, which showed that 
he had received that intelligence then. 

2 Gayarre', 579, 623. 


that he would have no man in the city who was not 
bound to help defend it. March 8th he suspended 
this order, except as to the French consul, a man 
who had lost an arm in the American revolution. 
There had been almost civil war between the 
French and American residents. March 3d the 
same Louaillier, who had been conspicuous as an 
advocate of energetic defence, wrote an article for 
a local paper, criticising the order of February 
28th, and urging that martial law should be abol- 
ished. The English troops had all departed about 
six weeks before. 1 The editor, when called to ac- 
count for this article, gave up his contributor. 
Louaillier was arrested March 4th, under a law 
against " lurking " near camps and forts. Judge 
Hall, of the United States District Court, issued a 
writ of habeas corpus for him. Jackson received 
news of the peace from Washington on March 6th, 
but by some blunder the courier did not bring the 
document containing the official notification. On 
that day Jackson convened a court-martial to try 
Louaillier. He sent an officer to arrest Judge 
Hall, and to obtain from the clerk of the court the 
original writ of habeas corpus. The writ was writ- 
ten on the back of the petition for it, 2 on the 5th, 
which was Sunday ; therefore it was dated on the 
6th. Jackson seized the original writ in order to 

1 Gayarre, 616. 

2 Martin, 397. It appears that the writ was submitted to the 
judge with the date, the 5th, and that he changed the date in 
signing it. 


prove the " forgery " of the date. In 1842 he laid > 
great stress on this alteration of the date. He 
seemed to think that it bore materially on the 
question whether Hall was guilty, by the writ, of 
inciting to mutiny in his camp, 1 but although he 
had, what was called in the documents of the time, 
"persuasive evidence" of peace on the 6th, he 
maintained his military organization two days 
longer. On the 8th he disbanded the militia. On 
the same day Dick, the District Attorney of the 
United States, obtained from a State judge a ha- 
beas corpus for Hall. Jackson arrested and im- 
prisoned Dick with Louaillier. He arrested the 
State judge too, but soon released him and Dick. 
The court-martial struck out all the charges against 
Louaillier except one (illegal and improper con- 
duct), for want of jurisdiction, and acquitted him 
on that. Jackson disapproved of this finding, and 
defended his own proceedings. On the llth of 
March he sent Hall four miles out of the city and 
released him. Louaillier was kept in prison until 
the official document announcing the peace was re- 
ceived, March 13th. On the 22d of March the 
United States District Court ordered Jackson to 
show cause why an attachment should not issue 
against him for contempt of court, in wresting an 
original document from the court, disobeying the 
writ of habeas corpus, and imprisoning the judge. 
Jackson refused to answer save by a general vindi- 
cation of his proceedings. This the judge refused 

i Several letters in the Ford MSS. and 62 Niles, 326. 


to hear, and fined him $1000.* Jackson tried to 
escape by saying that his actions were against Hall, 
the man, not against Hall, the judge. In 1842 
Tyler recommended Congress to refund the fine 
without reflecting on the court. J. Q. Adams said 
in a speech, January 6, 1843, that this was auction- 
eering for the presidency, all the factions desiring 
Jackson's support. 2 In 1844 Congress refunded 
the fine with interest, total $2700. In a letter 
to L. F. Linn, March 14, 1842, 3 Jackson refers to 
the fine as having been laid because he declared 
martial law. He wrote to Lewis, in 1843 : 

" It surely was one of the greatest usurpations in Hall 
recorded in the history of the world he usurped the 
power of the holy inquisition to charge, try, and condemn 
me, unheard in open violation of the constitution & all 
law he had no legal power for his proceedings & In- 
gersol has clearly shewn it, and I trust it will be fully 
investigated] now whilst I am living, that the people 
may see, who were the tyrants & who the usurper of 
power." 4 

. In this incident Jackson displayed some of the 
faults of which he afterwards showed many in- 

1 Report of a committee of the House of Representatives ; 64 
Niles, 61 (1843). Cf. the account in 8 Niles, 246, and Judge 
Hall's response, Ibid., 272 (1815). 

2 63 Niles, 312. 

3 62 Niles, 212. For Jackson's own story of the fine, see 62 
Niles, 326. 

4 Ford MSS. The best account of the trial, etc., is by Judge 
Martin, who was in New Orleans at the time, and was a competent 
observer and historian. His account has been followed above. 


stances. He spoiled his military success by this 
unnecessary collision with the civil authority. He 
proved himself wrong-headed and persistent in a 
course in which every step would have warned him 
of his error, if he had been willing to learn. Being 
committed by his first passionate and hasty step, 
he was determined to push through on the course 
he had adopted. He knew with reasonable cer- 
tainty from February 18, and to a moral certainty 
from the 6th of March, that the war was at an end. 
All these mischievous proceedings took place on 
and after the latter date. A very little concession 
and good-will at any time would have avoided the 
whole trouble, but Jackson acted as if he was de- 
termined to grind out of the opposing elements in 
the situation all the friction of which they were 

April 12th, Dallas, acting Secretary of War, 
wrote a dispatch to Jackson, asking for explanations 
of the proceedings, which were rehearsed in detail, 
and very accurately, according to reports which had 
reached Washington. " The President views the 
subject in its present aspect, with surprise and so- 
licitude ; but in the absence of all information 
from yourself, relative to your conduct and the 
motives for your conduct, he abstains from any de- 
cision, or even the expression of an opinion, upon 
the case, in hopes that such explanations may be 
afforded as will reconcile his sense of public duty 
with a continuance of the confidence which he re- 
poses in your judgment, discretion, and patriotism." 


As the matter was all past and dead, and no one 
desired to mar the exultation of the public or the 
personal satisfaction of Jackson, it was allowed to 

In the autumn of 1815 Jackson was in Washing- 
ton, conferring with the War Department about 
the peace footing of the army. In the spring of 
1816 he was at New Orleans on business of his 
military department. 



ANDREW JACKSON took no important part in 
the election of 1816. He had favored Monroe in 
1808, and he preferred him to the other candidates 
in 1816. Crawford was, at this time, Jackson's 
pet dislike. The reason for this was that Craw- 
ford, as Secretary of War, had modified Jackson's 
treaty with the Creeks, about which the Cherokees, 
deeming the terms unjust to them, had appealed 
to the President. Jackson made a personal quar- 
rel with a public man for not acting as he, Jackson, 
wanted him to act in the discharge of his duty. 
Jackson resumed the negotiation, and bought again 
the lands ceded before. As the people of Tennes- 
see, Georgia, and Alabama were interested in the 
cession, Jackson, by re-obtaining it after it had 
been surrendered, greatly increased his popularity. 1 

November 12, 1816, a letter, signed by Jackson, 
was addressed to Monroe, immediately after his 
election to the presidency, urging the appointment 
of Wm. Dray ton, of South Carolina, as Secretary 
of War. Wm. B. Lewis, Jackson's neighbor and 
confidential friend, husband of one of Mrs. Jack- 
1 11 Niles, 143. 


son's nieces, wrote this letter. As Parton says, 
one has no trouble in distinguishing those letters 
signed Jackson, but which have been copied and 
revised by Lewis, Lee, Livingston and others, from 
those which have not been through that process. A 
part of this letter was connected with a land specu- 
lation, but the political part of it seems gratuitous 
and impertinent. It "is, in fact, introduced by an 
apology. It is difficult to see its significance and 
that of others which Jackson wrote during this 
winter (1816-17), unless he was being used to 
advance an intrigue on behalf of Drayton about 
which we have no other information. The ideas 
and suggestions are not at all such as would arise 
in Jackson's mind. Drayton had been a federalist. 
He belonged to the South Carolina aristocracy. 
No ties of any kind are known to have existed 
between him and Jackson, either before or after 
this time. Jackson said in 1824 that he did not 
know Drayton in 1816. 1 Drayton was not ap- 

These well-composed letters failed entirely of their 
immediate object ; and they reposed in obscurity 
for seven, years. Lewis was an astonishingly far- 
sighted man. We shall see abundant proofs, here- 
after, of his power to put down a stake where he 
foresaw that he would need to exert a strain a little 
later, but it does not seem credible that he can 
have foreseen and prepared for the ultimate pur- 
pose which these letters served. His own account, 
1 26 Niles, 162. 


endorsed on a MS. copy of this especial letter, and 
dated 1835, is:- 

44 Gen. Jackson furnished the rough draft, from which 
the letter was prepared by the undersigned. The ori- 
ginal letter will be found, if examined, to be in my 
hand-writing. The ideas are the General's and the 
language mine. It contained sentiments so patriotic and 
liberal I thought them worthy the Hero of New Orleans, 
and deserved to be handed down to posterity. So 
strongly was this opinion impressed upon my mind, at 
the time, that I took a copy, unknown to him, to be 
placed in the hands of his future biographer, should the 
original fail to find its way to the public. This precau- 
tion, however, turned out to be unnecessary, as it was 
unexpectedly brought to light, about eleven years ago, 
and has been frequently published since. It was called 
out by Gen. Jackson's political enemies, when he was 
first a candidate for the presidency. They, understand- 
ing such a letter had been written to Mr. Monroe, 
resolved on having it published, under the belief it would 
ruin him in the estimation of the republican party in 
Pennsylvania, with whom he was a great favorite, but 
in this they reckoned without their host. Instead of 
weakening, it evidently strengthened him, and was one 
of the principal causes of his receiving the highest elec- 
toral vote in 1824, and was probably the means of 
securing his election in 1828." 1 

He engineered the " calling out " and the produc- 
tion of the letter, in 1824, himself. 

In the course of his argument on behalf of Dray- 
ton, Jackson was led (in the letters) to discuss 
i Ford MSS. 


the general theory of appointments, and to urge 
Monroe to abandon the proscription of the federal- 
ists, to appoint them to office, and to promote 
reconciliation and good-will. He declared that he 
would have hung -the leaders of the Hartford con- 
vention, if he had been in command in the eastern 
department in 1815. In 1823 and 1824 the letters 
were used with great effect to draw federalists to 
the support of Jackson. They were delighted with 
the tone and sentiment of them, 1 although a few 
winced at the reference to the Hartford convention. 
In 1828 the other aspect of the letters rather pre- 
dominated. The democrats were not quite pleased 
that Jackson should have urged Monroe to appoint 
federalists and disregard party. 2 

Monroe was being acted upon, when Jackson 
wrote to him, from the other side, by those who 
wanted him to favor the Monroe faction in the re- 
publican party. He had enough to do to maintain 
himself between the two demands. He answered 
Jackson, admitting the high principle of the course 
Jackson advocated, but setting forth a theory of 
appointments more conformable to the exigencies 
of party politics. 

April 22, 1817, Jackson published an order to his 
department forbidding his subordinates to obey any 
order from the War Department not issued through 

1 Binns, 249. 

2 The whole correspondence, 26 Niles, 163 et seq. See com- 
ments quoted, ibid., p. 219. For the disapproval of the demo- 
crats, see Binus, 246. 


Whim. He had been much and justly annoyed at 
incidents in the service under him, of which he had 
not been informed beforehand, and also by direct 
orders issued from Washington, which interfered 
with his arrangements and frustrated them without 
his knowledge. On the merits of the question he 
was in the right, but his public " order " produced 
an unnecessary scandal and public collision in a 
case where a proper private representation to the 
department would have answered every purpose. 
Crawford was transferred to the treasury in Octo- 
ber, 1816. There was difficulty in filling the posi- 
tion of Secretary of War* Calhoun was appointed 
October 8, 1817. He conceded the point claimed 
by Jackson, reserving only the cases of emer- 

Some persons informed Jackson that General 
Scott had animadverted upon his action in the 
matter just mentioned, and had characterized it as 
mutiny. September 8, 1817, Jackson wrote a fiery 
letter to Scott, calling him to account., Scott re- 
plied that, in private conversation, he had said that 
the order of April 22d was mutinous as to the fu- 
ture, and a reflection on the President, the Com- 
mander-in-Chief, as to the past. He disclaimed 
any personal feeling. Jackson replied in a very 
insulting letter, in which the well-battered question, 
Who of us two is the gentleman ? did good service 
again, and he wound up with a challenge to a duel. 
Scott declined the challenge on the ground of re- 
ligious scruples and patriotic duty. The cor re- 


spondence was almost immediately published. It 
created another scandal, for the public was not edi- 
fied to see two of the first officers of the army en- 
gaged in such a quarrel. 1 Niles, who at this time 
greatly admired Jackson, and who is always a good 
representative of the average citizens of his time, 
refrained from publishing the correspondence until 
April, 1819. 2 In this case, again, Jackson showed 
evidence of an ungovernable temper and a willing- 
ness to profit by every opportunity for a quarrel. 

There was, however, more public fighting at 

There were in Florida many refugee Indians of 
the Creek nation, who were hostile to the United 
States, and many runaway negroes. During the 
war the English had sought such aid as they could 
get from these persons in their operations against 
the United States. They had built a fort on the 
Appalachicola River, about fifteen miles from its 
mouth, and had collected there an immense amount 
of arms and ammunition. The English officers 
who were operating in Florida acted with a great 
deal of arbitrary self-will. They were not under 
strict responsibility to their own government. 
They were operating on Spanish territory. They 
were stirring up Indians and negroes, and were not 
commanding a regular or civilized force. It is diffi- 
cult to understand some of their proceedings in any 
point of view, and other of their doings certainly 
would not have been sanctioned by the English 

i 14 Niles, 295 ; 4 Adams, 323. 2 16 Niles, 121. 


government, if known to it. The officers were able 
t to gratify their own malice without responsibility. 

When the war ended, the English left the arms 
and ammunition in the fort. The negroes^ seized 
the fort, and it became known as the " Negro Fort." 
The authorities of the United States sent General 
Gaines to the Florida frontier with troops, to 
establish peace on the border. The Negro Fort 
was a source of anxiety both to the military au- 
thorities and to the slave-owners of Georgia, and, 
according to some accounts, the first step was its 
investment. It is otherwise stated that the Ameri- 
can authorities undertook to bring supplies up the 
Appalachicola for a fort which they were building 
in Georgia, and that the boats were fired on, after 
which the troops marched down from Georgia and 
invested the fort, having received permission to do 
so from the Spanish authorities at Pensacola, who 
also very unwillingly saw a great fortress estab- 
lished in their territory, and held by negroes and 
Indians. 1 The fort was bombarded. A hot shot 
penetrated one of the magazines, and the whole 
fort was blown to pieces, July 27, 1816. There 
were three hundred negro men, women, and chil- 
dren and twenty Choctaws in the fort ; two hun- 
dred and seventy were killed. Only three came 
out unhurt, and these were killed by the allied In- 
dians. 2 

1 Document A, 55. 

2 See Wait's State Papers, vii. 478, 482 ; viii. 126-135 ; ix. 41- 
9 : 154-198. 


Spain was engaged in hostilities with her re- 
volted colonies in America. Filibusters and pri- 
vateers took advantage of this state of things to 
carry on a certain grade of piracy and the slave- 
trade. Amelia Island, on the northeast coast of 
Florida, had been infested by smugglers, slavers, 
and freebooters ever since the war with England. 
In 1817 the island was occupied by a filibuster 
named McGregor, and later by another named 
Aury. They pretended to desire to render Florida 
independent, and there was a measure of honest 
intention in their plans, but the island was a nest 
of outlaws and a nuisance. The troops of the 
United States took possession of the island and 
drove the freebooters out, because Spain was not 
able to do so. Old causes of complaint against 
Spain with respect to Florida have been described 
above. 1 The hostile Indians and the freebooters 
were new causes of annoyance. The Georgians 
were also annoyed that their slaves found an easy 
refuge in Florida. It had been amply proved that 
Spain could not fulfil the duties which devolved 
upon her as owner of Florida. Yet she strenuously 
insisted that her sovereignty should be respected. 2 
For all these reasons the United States was very 
anxious to buy Florida. 

During 1817 there were freojjenl; Collision sou 

tlie"rr6n|iers between white men and Indians,^ JEx- 

Governor Mitchell of Georgia, the Indian agent, 

the fairest and best informed witness who appeared 

1 See page 23. 2 Document A, 55. 


before the committee of Congress in 1818-19, de- 
posed that the blame for these collisions was equal, 
that one party was as often the aggressor as the 
other, and that the lawless persons in Florida were 
especially to blame for acts of injury which pro- 
voked retaliation. 1 When Gaines wrote to the chief 
Kenhigee that his Indians had killed white men, 
the chief replied that four Indians had been killed 
for every white man. 2 The reports which were 
sent North were, as usual in such cases, only such 
as tended to show an aggressive disposition on the 
part of the Indians. 3 

On the 20th of November, General Gaines sent 
a force of two hundred and fifty men to Fowltown, 
the headquarters of the chief of the " Redsticks," 
or hostile Creeks. They approached the town in 
the early morning, and were fired on. An en- 
gagement followed. The town was taken and 
burned. Gaines's dispatch to the Governor of 
Georgia puts the number of Indians killed at 
four. 4 Ex-Governor Mitchell of Georgia, quoted 
above, said, " This fact was, I conceive, the cause 
of the Seminole war." It is, however, fair to say 
that Mitchell was unfriendly to Gaines and to 
Jackson. 5 The Indians of that section, after this, 
began general hostilities, attacked the boats which 
were ascending the Appalachicola, and massacred 
the persons in them. Gaines states no reason at 

1 16 Niles, 85. 2 Document A, 140. 

8 See the items of news from Florida in 18 Niles. 
* 13 Niles, 296. 5 43 Niles, 80. 


all for sending a force against Fowltown, except 
that he had invited the chief to visit him, in or- 
der to find out "whether his hostile temper had 
abated." The chief refused to come. The friendly 
Indians said that the Fowltown Indians had been 
hostile ever since the last war. Therefore Gaines 
sent a force equal to the number of Indians in the 
town " to bring the chief and warriors, and, in 
the event of resistance, to treat them as enemies." 
When the Indians saw this force approaching they 
fired on it, stood fire once, and then ran away. 
Their property was then all destroyed, and the 
United States had an Indian war on its hands. 

In December, on receipt of intelligence of the 
battle at Fowltown and the attack on the boats, 
Jackson was ordered to take command in Georgia. 
He wrote to .President MoEroe: **ljet it be signi- ^ 
fied to me through any channel (say Mr. J. Rhea l ) 
that the possession of the Floridas would be desir- 
able to the United States, and in sixty days it 
will be accomplished." Much was afterwards 
made to depend on this letter. Monroe was ill 
when it reached Washington, and he did not see 
or read it until a year afterwards, when some re- 
ference was made to it. 2 Jackson construed the 

1 This name is found at the head of a movement, in 1810, to set 
up a filibuster state in Florida. Rhea signed " as President " an 
application, dated at Baton Rouge, for the admission of such state 
to the Unjon. It is couched in such terms as to call for the covert 
approval of the United States before becoming explicit. 7 Wait's 
State Papers, 482. 

2 8 Adams, 249. 


orders which he received from Calhoun from the 
standpoint of this letter. He also afterwards af- 
firmed that Rhea wrote to him that the President 
approved of his suggestions ; 1 but he could not pro- 
duce that letter. He had burned it. 2 He certainly 
supposed, however, that he had the secret concur- 
rence of the administration in conquering Florida. 
In 1811 orders were given to General Matthews to 
sound the inhabitants of East Florida as to coming 
into the Union ; also not to let any foreign nation 
occupy Florida. 3 Any one who knew this might 
well infer that the authorities at Washington would 
not be scrupulous about invading Florida. 

When the orders to take command reached 
Jackson, the Governor of Tennessee was absent 
from Nashville. Jackson proceeded to raise troops 
iji Tennessee on his own responsibility : he being 
authorized to call on the governors of the States 
which were neighbors to the scene of war. He 
pushed on his preparations with great energy and 

1 8 Adams, 404. 

2 Memorandum by Jackson, 1837. He told Henry Lee, who 
was astonished that he had burned the letter, that " it was at the 
earnest personal request of Mr. Rhea, and Mr. Rhea stated at the 
earnest request of Mr. Munroe, as my health was delicate and I 
might die without destroying that confidential letter, which was 
strictly confidential and I had promised him that as soon as I 
reached home I would burn it and having so promised I did 
burn and made that memorandum on the margin to show I had 
complied with my promise." He wanted Lee to testify that he 
had seen the entry on the margin of the letter-book opposite Jack- 
Bon's letter to Monroe. Ford MSS. 

8 9 Wait's State Papers, 41. 


celerity. His acts were approved both by the State 
and federal authorities. He advanced through 


Georgia with great haste, and was on the Florida 
frontier^ jii^^Iarc h, 1818. He ordered part of his 
provisions sent to Fort Scott by the Appalachicola, 
on which the Spaniards had no fort, and he sent 
word to the Spanish commander at Pensacola that, 
if the fort at Barrancas hindered his supply boats 
from ascending the Escambia, he should consider 
it an act of hostility to the United States. These 
were, to say the least, very aggressive proceedings 
against a nation with which we were at peace, for 
a man who had been thrown into paroxysms of 
rage and energy at the idea of a redcoat resting on 
the soil of Louisiana during a public war. Jack- 
son immediately advanced to St. Majk's, which 
place he captured. On his way down the Appala- 
chicola he found the Indians and negroes at work 
in the fields, and unconscious of any impending 
attack. Some of them fled to St. Mark's. His 
theory, in which he supposed that he was supported 
by the administration, was that he was to pursue 
the Indians until he caught them, wherever they 
might go ; that he was to respect Spanish rights 
as far as he could consistently with that purpose ; 
and that the excuse for his proceedings was that 
Spain could not police her own territory, or restrain 
the Indians. Jackson's proceedings were based on 
two positive but arbitrary assumptions : (1) That 
the Indians got aid and encouragement from 
St. Mark's and Pensacola. (This the Spaniards 


always denied, but perhaps another assumption of 
Jackson might be mentioned : that the word of a 
Spanish official was of no value.) (2) That Great 
Britain kept paid emissaries employed in Florida 
to^stir up trouble for the United States. This 
latter assumption was a matter of profound belief 
generally in the United States. Niles's reports 
and criticisms of events in Florida all proceed 
from that assumption. 1 The English government 
disavowed every transaction of Colonel Nichols 
with the Indians which took definite shape and 
could be dealt with at all. The Indians whom he 
took to England were kindly treated, but were not 
encouraged to look to England for any assistance 
or countenance. It was not easy to break off the 
connections which had been established, and destroy 
the hopes which had been raised, during the war, 
but there is not the slightest evidence that the 
English government did not act in good faith, or 
that it was busy in such contemptible business as 
employing emissaries to stir up some two thou- 
sand savages to wage a frontier war on the United 
States, after peace had been concluded. Jackson's 
assumption, however, had serious import for two 
unfortunate individuals. / 

A Scotchman, Alexander Arbuthnot, was found 
by Jackson in St. Mark's. When the fort was 
taken, Arbuthnot mounted his horse to ride away, 
but he was seized, and put in confinement He 
was an Indian trader, who had been in Florida for 

1 14 Niles ; all the articles on Florida. 


many years. He had established as intimate and 
friendly relations as possible with the Indians for 
his own security and advantage in trade. He had 
also sympathized with the Indians, and had exerted 
himself in their behalf in many quarters. 

Several American vessels of war lay in the bay 
of St. Mark's to cooperate with the land forces. 
By displaying English colors on these ships, two 
Indian chiefs, Hillis Hajo (or Francis) and Himol- 
lemico, were enticed on board and made prisoners. 
They were hung by Jackson's order. They had 
tortured and massacred prisoners after the Indian 
fashion, but no one has ever explained by what law 
or usage known in the service of the United States 
they were put to death, when thus captured, not 
even on the field of battle, but by a very question- 
able trick. 

Jackson pushed on with the least possible delay 
to the Suwanee River, where were the headquarters 
of Boleck (Billy Bowlegs), the Seminole chief. 
Arbuthnot had a trading-post there. When he 
had heard of Jackson's advance, he had written 
to his son, who was his agent at Boleck's village, 
to carry the goods across the river. Through 
this letter the Indians 'got warning in time to cross 
the river and take to the swamps. Their escape 
enraged Jackson. He had already regarded Ar- 
buthnot as one of the British emissaries. He now 
considered Arbuthnot's letter an overt act of in- 
terference in the war. The town was burned by 
Jackson. In its neighborhood he captured an 


Englishman named Robert Ambrister, an ex-lieu- 
tenant in the British marines, and nephew of the 
Governor of New Providence. This man was car- 
ried as a prisoner to St. Mark's, the troops being 
on their way home, and the war being over. A 
court-martial was convened at St. Mark's. Arbuth- 
not was tried for (1) inciting the Creek Indians 
to war against the United States ; (2) being a spy 
and aiding the enemy ; (3) inciting the Indians 
to murder two white men named. The court found 
him guilty of the first charge and of the second 
except of being a spy, and condemned him to t>e 
hung. There was no evidence at all against him 
on any charge. 1 His business in Florida was open 
and obvious. He had always advised the Indians 
to peace and submission. His letter to his son was 
not open to censure. Can traders be executed if 
their information, not transmitted through the lines, 
frustrates military purposes ? As Arbuthnot con- 
strued the Treaty of Ghent the Indians were to 
have their lands restored, and he told them so. 
There was so much room for this construction that 
diplomatic measures were necessary to set it aside. 
Peace had been made with the Creeks before the 
Treaty of Ghent was made. 

Ambrister was tried for inciting the Indians and 
levying war. His case was different. He had no 
ostensible business in Florida. He was an adven- 

1 Report of the trial in full, 15 Niles, 270. All the documents 
about the Negro Fort and the invasion of Florida are in Docu- 
ment A. 


turer, and it is not clear what he hoped or intended. 
He threw himself on the mercy of the court. He 
was condemned to be shot. This sentence was 
reconsidered, and he was then condemned to fifty 
lashes and a year of hard labor. Jackson disap- 
proved of the reconsideration, revived the first 
sentence, and ordered both men to be executed. 
April 29, 1818, he left St. Mark's, having detached 
a force to hold that place and to execute the sen- 
tence. The same day both men were executed. 
Arbuthnot was seventy years old ; Ambrister was 

It was as a mere incident of his homeward march 
that Jackson turned aside and captured Pensacola, 
May 24, 1818, because he was told that some 
Indians had taken refuge there. He deposed the 
Spanish government, set up a new one, and estab- 
lished a garrison. He then continued his march 
homewards. On his way he heard of an attack 
by Georgia militia on the villages of friendly and 
allied Indians, and he became engaged in a fiery 
correspondence with Governor Rabun of Georgia 
about that affair. 1 He was in the right, but it 
was another case in which by violence he pro- 
voked anger and discord, when he might have 
accomplished much more by a temperate remon- 

In the whole Florida matter we see Jackson pro- 
ceeding to summary measures on inadequate facts 
and information. He "knew" how the matter 
1 Documents in the Supplement to 15 Niles, 56. 


stood by the current prejudices and assumptions, 
not by evidence and information. This was the- 
tone of his mind. Notions and prepossessions 
which once effected a lodgment in his mind, because 
circumstances gave them a certain plausibility, or 
because they fell in with some general prejudice or 
personal bias of his, immediately gained for him 
the character of obvious facts or self-evident truths. 
He then pursued such notions and prepossessions 
to their last consequences, and woe to any one who 
stood in the way. 1 

General Jackson had, in five months, broken 
the Indian power, established peace on the border, 
and substantially conquered Florida. This five 
months and the eighteen months service in 181315 
were all the actual service he ever saw. The Semi- 
nole war was, in its relations and effects, one of the 
most important events in our history, but in itself 
it was one of the most insignificant of our Indian 
campaigns. Jackson had an overwhelming force. 
The report of the Senate committee of 1819 puts 
his force at 1,800 whites and 1,500 friendly In- 
dians. The hostile Indians were never put by 
anybody at a higher number than 2,000. This 
committee put them at 1,000, not over half of 
whom, at any one time, were in front of Jackson. 
The allied Indians did all the fighting. They lost 

1 "It was easy to see that he was not a man to accept a 
difference of opinion with equanimity, but that was clearly be- 
cause, he being honest and earnest, Heaven would not suffer his 
opinions to be other than right." Quincy ; Figures, 355. 


twenty rnen in the campaign. Not one white man 
was killed. The number of hostile Indians killed 
is put at sixty. 1 

The trouble with Jackson's achievements was 
that he had done too much. The statesmen and 
diplomatists could not keep up with him, and the 
tasks he threw on them were harder than those he 
performed in the field. The administration was 
not aware that it had authorized him to violate 
neutral territory. Federal administrations in those 
days were always timid. They did not know the 
limits of their power, or what they dared do. 
Monroe was especially timid. His administration 
wanted to buy Florida, not conquer it. They did 
not thank Jackson for plunging them into such a 
difficulty with Congress and with England and 
Spain all at once. The two Indian captives who 
had been hung had no friends, but their execution 
was an awkward thing to justify before the civilized 
world. The execution of the two Englishmen was 
likely to provoke a great deal of diplomatic trouble. 
Jackson had been perfectly sure about the law. 
He laid it down in the order for the execution. 
" It is an established principle of the law of nations 
that any individual of a nation making war against 
the citizens of any other nation, they being at 
peace, forfeits his allegiance, and becomes an out- 
law and a pirate." If the facts are admitted, such 
a person undoubtedly forfeits his allegiance, and 
cannot demand the protection of his sovereign, 

1 Perkins, 113. 


whatever may happen to him. On this ground 
the English government took no steps in relation 
to the execution of Arbuthnot and Ambrister, be- 
yond an inquiry into the facts of their alleged 
complicity in the war, 1 and that inquiry was not 
pushed as we may hope that the government of 
the United States will push the inquiry, if an 
American citizen is ever executed as Arbuthnot was. 
The doctrine of Jackson's order, that a person who 
engages in a war to which his country is not a 
party becomes an outlaw and pirate, will not stand. 
As has been well said, there were a large number 
of foreigners in the American army during the 
Revolution, who, on this doctrine, would, if cap- 
tured by the English, have forfeited their lives. 
The United States would have protected any such 
persons by retaliation or otherwise. The Creeks 
were not a nation in international law, they were 
not the possessors of the soil on which they lived 
and fought ; there had never been a declaration of 
war ; yet they were not rebels against the United 
States, and it could not be denied that they had 
some belligerent rights. Whatever rights they 
had, the Englishmen, even if they had been com- 
plete and unquestioned allies, must also have been 
entitled to from the American authorities. If, 
then, the Indians were not to be hunted down 
like wild beasts, or executed by court-martial, if 
captured, for levying war on the United States, 

1 1 Rush, 473. "War might have been produced on this oc- 
casion ' if the ministry had but held up a finger.' " (488.) 


the Englishmen were executed without right or 
law. There never was any proof that .anybody 
incited the Indians. The attack on Fowltown pre- 
cipitated hostilities in a situation where lawless 
men and savages, by mutual annoyance, outrage, 
and retaliation, had prepared the warlike temper*. 
When the matter was investigated this appeared, 
and it was seen that Jackson had acted unjus- 
tifiably, because without evidence or law. The 
popular feeling, however, would not allow him 
to be censured. Niles, who well represents the pop- 
ular temper, believed in the emissary- theory, and 
when that theory broke down he became angry. 1 
He also expressed the popular feeling with great 
exactness in this paragraph : " The fact is that 
ninety-nine in a hundred of the people believe 
that General Jackson acted on every occasion for 
the good of his country, and success universally 
crowned his efforts. He has suffered more hard- 
ships, and encountered higher responsibilities, than 
any man living in the United States to serve us, 
and has his reward in the sanction of his govern- 
ment and the approbation of the people." With 
this dictum the case was dismissed, and the matter 
stood so that General Jackson, having done im- 
portant public military service, could not be called 
to account, although he had hung four persons 
without warrant of law. His popularity had al- 
ready begun to exercise a dispensing power in his 
favor. A committee of the House of Representa- 
1 See his editorial, 16 Niles, 25, 


tives, 1 at the next session, reported a vote of censure 
on him for the execution of the Englishmen, but 
the House, after a long debate, refused to pass it. 

Jackson's proceedings came up in Monroe's cab- 
inet on the question what to do with him and his 
conquests. Calhoun was vexed at Jackson's insub- 
ordination to the War Department. He wanted 
Jackson censured. The President and the whole 
cabinet, with the exception of Adams, disapproved 
of Jackson's conduct in invading Florida, and 
were ready to disavow his proceedings and make 
reparation. 2 * On Adams would fall the labor of 
vindicating Jackson's proceedings diplomatically, 
if the administration should assume the responsi- 
bility for them. He avowed himself ready to 
undertake the task, and to perform it substantially 
on the grounds on which Jackson justified him- 
self. It was agreed that Pensacola and St. Mark's 
should be restored to Spain, but that Jackson's 
course should be approved and defended on the 
grounds that he pursued his enemy to his ref- 
uge, and that Spain could not do the duty which 
devolved on her. The President, however, coun- 
termanded an order which Jackson had given to 
Gaines to seize St. Augustine because some Indians 
had taken refuge there. All the members of the 
cabinet agreed to the policy decided on, and all 
loyally adhered to it, the secret of their first opinion 
being preserved for ten years. Calhoun wrote to 
Jackson in accordance with the agreement, con- 
1 15 Niles, 394. ? 2 Gallatin's Writings, 117. 


gratulating and approving. Jackson inferred that 
Calhoun had been his friend in the cabinet all the 
time, and that his old enemy, Crawford, had been 
the head of the hostile party. " There is one fact 
I wish Mr. Munroe to know that Mr. Wm. H. 
Crawford, whatever his pretensions are, is not his 
friend and facts can be produced on this head 
I know he is my enemy and I also know he 
is a base man " l The political history of this 
country was permanently affected by the personal 
relations of Jackson to Calhoun and Crawford on 
that matter. Monroe had a long correspondence 
with Jackson to try to reconcile him to the surren- 
der of the forts to Spain. In that correspondence 
Jackson did not mention the Rhea letter. 

At the next session of Congress (181819) the 
proceedings in Florida were made the subject of 
inquiry, and were at once involved in the politics 
of the day. Clay was in opposition to the adminis- 
tration because he had not been made Secretary of 
State. He refused the War Department and the 
mission to England. His opposition was factious. 
After the administration assumed the responsibility 
for Jackson's doings, Clay opened the attack on 
them. Here began the feud between Clay and 
Jackson. The latter was in a doubly irritable 
state of mind between the flatterers on one side 
and the critics on the other. The personal element 
came to the front. Any one who approved of his 
acts was his friend ; any one who criticised was his 
1 Ford MSS. Jackson to Lewis, Dec. 8, 1817. 


enemy ; whether any personal feeling was brought 
to the discussion of a question of law and fact or 
not. There are some facts which look as if Clay 
and Crawford had begun to regard Jackson as a 
possible competitor for the presidency. Crawford 
was in communication with the committees on the 
Seminole war, apparently instigating action, while 
Calhoun tried to quell the excitement and avert 
action, out of loyalty to the decision adopted by 
the administration of' which he was a member. 1 
The Georgian friends of Crawford in Congress 
led the attack on Jackson. 2 Crawford and Cal- 
houn were enemies. Adams was writing dispatches 
and preparing instructions, by which, both with 
England and Spain, he succeeded in vindicating 
Jackson's proceedings. He said that he could not 
regard a man of Jackson's distinguished services 
like any other man. 3 He therefore yielded to the 
prevailing current of the time, and incurred a large 
responsibility for saving Jackson from censure, 
and making possible his later career. He and 
Jackson were, at this time, friends, and one scheme 
was to make Jackson Vice-President on a ticket 
with Adams. 4 Adams's defence of Jackson was 

1 See Lacock's letter of June 25, 1832, in answer to Jackson's 
interrogatories. 43 Niles, 79. 

2 8 Adams, 240. . 3 5 Adams, 473. 

4 Adams said (in 1824) that the vice-presidency would be a 
nice place for Jackson's old age. Jackson was four months older 
than Adams. This is not so ridiculous as it would be if Jackson 
had not pleaded old age and illness as a reason why he should not 
go to the Senate in 1823. See 6 Adams, 633, 


very plausible, and it was fortified line by line 
with references to the documentary proofs, yet if 
it had been worth any one's while, either in Eng- 
land or this country, to examine the alleged proofs, 
as any one may do now, verifying his references, 
all the case against Arbuthnot would have been 
found baseless. Adams quotes a certain letter as 
proof that Arbuthnot was not truly a trader, but 
had concealed purposes. The letter bears no testi- 
mony at all to the fact alleged. 1 Rush cited to 
the English minister another proof of this, which 
is equally frail, and only proves that Arbuthnot 
had taken trouble to try to serve the Indians out 
of pity for them. 2 His letter to his son, be- 
sides warning him to save as much as possible of 
their property, contained a message to Boleck not 
to resist the Americans. 3 The Senate committee 
reported February 24, 1819 (Lacock's Report), 
strongly against Jackson on all the points from 
the independent recruiting down to the taking 
of Pensacola. 4 No action was taken. Jackson 
had been in Washington during the winter watch- 
ing the proceedings. He attended one of the 
President's drawing-rooms. " From the earnest- 
ness with which the company pressed round him, 
the eagerness with which multitudes pushed to 
obtain personal introductions to him, and the eye 
of respect and gratitude which from every quarter 

1 Document A, 20, cf. 147. 

2 2 Rush, 52, cf. Document A, 215. 

3 Document A, 137. 4 16 Niles, 33. 


beamed upon him, it had as much the appearance 
of being his drawing-room as the President's." l 
In February he made an excursion as far north 
as New York. He was received everywhere with 
enthusiasm. There was a story that he was so 
angry at some of the proceedings in censure of 
him that he went to the Senate chamber to waylay 
some persons who had displeased him. He denied 

In 1819 the purchase of Florida was effected, 
although the treaty was not ratified until February 
22, 1821. In this treaty the western boundary of 
the Louisiana purchase was for the first time de- 
fined. Adams, while the negotiations were pend- 
ing, consulted Jackson about the boundary to be 
contended for. Jackson "said there were many 
persons who would take exception to our receding 
so far from the boundary of the Rio del Norte, 
which we claim, as the Sabine, and the enemies of 
the administration would certainly make a handle 
of it to assail them ; but the possession of the 
Floridas was. of so great importance to the south- 
ern frontier of the United States, and so essential 
even to their safety, that the vast majority of the 
nation would be satisfied with the western bound- 
ary as we propose, if we obtain the Floridas." 2 
Monroe and his cabinet seem to have cared just as 
little for Texas. Adams's diary shows that he was 
not heartily supported in the efforts he was willing 
to make to push the line westward. Jackson's 
- 1 4 Adams, 243. 2 Adams, 238-9. 


opinion about claiming Texas was of no value, but 
the fact that he was consulted showed the amount 
of respect and consideration which the administra- 
tion was willing to pay to him. In 1836, and again 
in 1843, Adams, citing his diary, declared that 
Jackson had been consulted, and had approved the 
Florida treaty. Jackson contradicted and denied 
it in a violent and insulting manner. 

In the spring of 1821 Jackson was appointed 
Governor of Florida, under the belief that the 
public would be glad to see him so honored. On 
July 21st of the same year he published general 
orders, 1 taking leave of his army, a reduction hav- 
ing been made by which he had been thrown out. 
In these orders, or in a postscript to them, he man- 
aged to come into collision with his colleague and 
senior, Major-General Brown, then chief in com- 
mand of the army of the United States, by taking 
up and criticising an order " signed Jacob Brown," 
especially in regard to the punishment for deser- 
tion. Brown was a New York militia general, some 
eight years younger than Jackson, who had dis- 
tinguished himself, in the general ill-success of the 
war, by some small successes on the northern fron- 
tier. He seemed to be the coming military hero of 
the war until he was eclipsed by Jackson. He 
took precedence of Jackson by seniority of appoint- 
ment, and so became chief in command. It had 
become evident now that Jackson needed much 
room in the world for all his jealousies and ani- 
1 21 Niles, 53. 


mosities, and that his fellow-men must put up with 
a great deal of arrogance and misbehavior on his 
part. His popularity shielded him. He had be- 
come a privileged person, like a great French 
nobleman of the last century. To offend him was 
to incur extraordinary penalties. To get in his 
way was to expose one's self to assaults which 
could not be resented as they would be if they 
came from another man. All this he had won by 
military success. At least it seemed fair to expect 
that he would observe military discipline and de- 
corum. But he did not do so, and no one dared to 
call him to account. 

Congress did not have time to legislate for the 
territory of Florida, after the treaty was ratified, 
before the end of the session. An act was passed 
extending to the new territory only the revenue 
laws and the law against the slave-trade. Jackson 
was- appointed Governor in April, with all the 
powers of the Captain-General of Cuba and the 
Spanish Governors of Florida, except that he could 
not lay taxes or grant land. 1 His position was 
therefore a very anomalous one, an American 
Governor under Spanish law, of an American terri- 
tory not yet under the Constitution and laws of the 
United States. Long delays, due to dilatoriness 
and inefficiency, postponed the actual cession until 
July 17th. Meanwhile Jackson was chafing and 
fuming, and strengthening his detestation of all 

1 His commission in full, 22 Niles, Supp. 148. 


In September certain persons represented to 
Jackson that papers which were necessary for the 
protection of their interests were being packed up, 
and would be carried away by the Spanish ex-Gov- 
ernor, contrary to the treaty. There were five or 
six sets of papers about property and land grants * 
which were missing. There had been complaints 
against the Spaniards for granting lands belonging 
to the Crown between the making and the ratifica- 
tion of the treaty. Jackson no doubt believed the 
worst against them. The persons who claimed his 
aid were weak and poor. With characteristic 
chivalry and impetuosity, he sent an officer to seize 
the papers. The ex-Governor, Callava, refused to 
give up any papers unless they were described, and 
a demand for them was addressed to him as Span- 
ish commissioner. He and Jackson seem to have 
worked at cross-purposes unnecessarily. It is hard 
to make out what the misunderstanding was (al- 
though the use of two languages might partly ac- 
count for it), unless Jackson was acting under 
his anti-Spanish bias. Jackson ended by sending 
Callava to the calaboose. Parton, who gives some 
special and interesting details derived from Brack- 
enridge, the - alcalde and interpreter, says that Cal- 
lava saw the ridiculous side of the affair, and that 
he and his friends " made a night of it " in the 
calaboose. Jackson sent an officer to Callava's 
house to take the papers, and then ordered Callava 
to be discharged. 

1 21 Niles, 150. 


Eligius Fromentin, of Louisiana, had been ap- 
pointed judge of the western district of Florida. 
He, upon application, issued a writ of habeas corpus 
for Callava. Jackson summoned Fromentin *bef ore 
him to show cause why he had interfered with Jack- 
son's authority as Governor of the Floridas with 
the powers of the Captain-General of Cuba, as 
" Supreme Judge," and as " Chancellor." Fro- 
mentin sent an excuse on the ground of illness. 
The next day he went to see Jackson, and after a 
fierce interview each prepared a " statement " to 
send to Washington. Callava went to Washing- 
ton to seek satisfaction. Some of his friends pub- 
lished, at Pensacola, a statement in his defence. 
Thereupon Jackson ordered them out of Florida at 
four days' notice, on pain of arrest for contempt 
and disobedience, if they were found there later. 
After all, the heirs of Vidal, who stirred up the 
whole trouble, were, according to Parton, indebted 
to the Forbes firm, against which they wanted to 
protect themselves. 1 This would not affect their 
right and interest in securing papers properly 
theirs. Whether the papers were being carried 
away, and did properly belong to the claimants, is 
not known. 2 

" I have no time," wrote Jackson to Lewis, Sept. 
21, 1821, " to write to a friend, my civil, military, 

1 2 Parton, 638. See Vidal's Heirs vs. J. Innerarity, 22 Niles, 
Supp. 147. 

2 All the documents are in Folio State Papers, 2 Miscellan^ 
199. The important papers are in 21 Niles. 


and Judicial Functions keep me constantly en- 
gaged as you will see from the news papers, that I 
am on some occasions for Justice sake, to use en- 
ergetic measures, but one thing you and my friends 
may rely on, that I have acted with great caution 
and prudence, and that my conduct when investi- 
gated will be as much approved as any act of my 

About the time of the trouble with Callava, 
Worthington, the Secretary and acting Governor 
of East Florida, was having a contest with Coppin- 
ger, the Spanish Governor of East Florida, about 
papers which the former seized under Jackson's 

Here, then, was another trouble which Jackson 
had prepared, in about six months' service, for his 
unhappy superiors. He was ill and disgusted with 
his office. He resigned and went home in Octo- 
ber. It is plain that he had acted from a good\ 
motive against Callava, and, being sure of his mo- I 
tive, he had disregarded diplomatic obligations, / 
evidence, law, propriety, and forms of procedure/ 
Those things only enraged him because they balked 
him of the quick purpose, born of his sense of jus- 
tice, and of his sympathy with an ex parte appeal 
to his power. Such a man is a dangerous person 
to be endowed with civil power. As to his quarrel 
with Fromentin, it was a farce. If Jackson had 
been a man of any introspection, he must have 
had, ever after, more charity for the whole class of 
Spanish governors, when he saw what an arrogant 


fool he had made of himself while endowed with 
indefinite and irresponsible power. 1 

Monroe's cabinet unanimously agreed that, as 
the only laws which had been extended to Florida 
were the revenue laws and those against the slave- 
trade, Fromentin's jurisdiction was limited to those 
laws, 2 and he could not issue a writ of habeas cor- 
pus. The President, Calhoun, and Wirt thought 
that he was not amenable for his error to Jackson. 
Adams took Jackson's part in this matter also. 
He said that Fromentin had violated Jackson's 
authority. 3 The cabinet discussed the subject for 
three days without reaching a decision. They 
were greatly perplexed as to the law and justice of 
the matter, and also as to its political effect. Con- 
gress took it up, and the newspapers were filled 
with it. At first the tide of opinion was against 
Jackson, but his popularity reacted against it, and 
the affair did not hurt him. 

In 1823 Jackson was offered the mission to 
Mexico. He declined it. Soon afterwards he 
published in the Mobile " Register " a letter stat- 
ing his reasons for declining. These reasons were 
a reflection on the administration, because they 
showed cause why no mission ought to be sent. 
The letter was calculated to win capital out of the 

1 " Although inebriety may be necessary to awaken the brute 
in man, absolute power suffices to bring out the fool." Taine, 
3 Revolution, 267. 

2 For Fromentin's own theory of his action, which was plainly 
erroneous, see 21 Niles, 252. 

3 5 Adams, 359, 368 to 380. 


appointment at the expense of the administration 
which had made it. 1 Monroe must have been often 
reminded of what Jefferson said to him, in 1818, 
when he asked whether it would not be wise to 
give Jackson the mission to Russia : " Why, good 
G-^d, he would oieed you a quarrel before he 
had been there a month ! " a 

1 24 Niles, 280. a 4 Adams, 76. 

1 K 

\V ^ 

\\A V ' 



THE Congressional caucus met April 8, 1820. 
The question was whether to nominate any candi- 
dates for President and Vice-President. Adams 
says that the caucus was called as part of a plan 
to nominate Clayior Vice-President. About forty 
members of Congress attended. R. M. Johnson 
offered a resolution that it was inexpedient to 
nominate candidates. This resolution was adopted, 
and the caucus adjourned. 1 Monroe received, at 
the election, every electoral vote save one, which 
was cast by Plumer, in New Hampshire, for Adams. 
Tomkius was reflected Vice-President, but he re- 
ceived fourteen less votes than Monroe. His repu- 
tation was declining. In raising money for the 
public service during the war he had engaged his 
own credit. His book-keeping was bad, and his 
accounts and the public accounts became so entan- 
gled that he could not separate them. 2 The trou- 
ble was that, in order to show himself a creditor, 
he had to include in his accounts interest, commis- 
sions, damages, allowances, etc., with interest on 
them all ; that is, all the ordinary and extraordi- 
1 5 Adams, 58, 60. 2 1 Hammond, 508 et seq. 

TARIFF OF 1820 93 

nary charges which a broker would make for find- 
ing funds for an embarrassed client. If these 
charges were all allowed, Tomkins could claim no 
credit for patriotism, If he was to keep the credit 
of extraordinary patriotism, he was a debtor. In 
1816 he was very popular and had high hopes of 
the presidency. In 1824 he retired neglected and 
forgotten. He died in June, 1825. 

During Monroe's second term each of the per- 
sonal factions was intriguing on behalf of its chief, 
and striving to kill off all the others. There were 
no real issues. On the return of peace in 1815, the 
industries which had grown up here during the 
war, to supply needs which could not, under the 
then existing laws, be supplied by importation, found 
themselves threatened with ruin. The tariff of 
1816, although its rates were of course far below 
the " double duties " which had been levied during 
the war, was supposed at the time to be amply pro- 
tective. It had been planned to that end. The 
embargo, non-intercourse, and war had created en- 
tirely artificial circumstances, which were a heavy 
burden on the nation as a whole, but which had 
given security and favor to certain manufacturing 
industries. There was no way to "protect" the 
industries after peace returned except to reproduce 
by taxes the same hardship for everybody else, 
and the same special"circumstances for the favored 
industries, as had been produced by embargo and 
war. In 1819 a great commercial crisis occurred, 
which prostrated all the industry of the country 


for four or five years. So long as vicious and de- 
preciated currencies existed in Europe, there was 
less penalty for a vicious currency here ; but as 
fast as European currencies improved after the 
return of peace, gold and silver began to go to the 
countries of improving currency, and away from 
the countries where the currency still remained 
bad. The " hard times " were made an argument 
to show that more protection was needed ; that is, 
that the country had been prosperous during war, 
and that the return of peace had ruined it, unless 
taxes could be devised which should press as hard 
as the war had done. The taxes had not indeed 
been made so heavy as that, and so more were 
needed. Currency theorists also arose to antici- 
pate all the wisdom of later days. They proved 
that the people of the United States, with a great 
continent at their disposal, could not get out of 
the continent an abundance of food, clothing, 
shelter and fuel because they had not enough bits 
of paper stamped " one dollar " at their disposal. 
The currency whims, however, hardly got into 
politics at that period. 

In 1820 a strong attempt was made to increase 
the tariff, to do away with credit for duties, and to 
put a check on sales at auction. As the presi- 
dential election was uncontested, power to carry 
these bills could not be concentrated. In 1824 the 
case was different. No faction dared vote against 
the higher tariff for fear of losing support. 1 The 
i 24 Niles, 324. 


tariff was not, therefore, a party question, The 
act was passed May 22, 1824, by a combination of 
Middle and Western States against New England, 
and on a combination of the iron, wool, hemp, 
whiskey, and sugar interests. New England, as 
the commercial district, was then for free trade. 

Jackson had been elected to the Senate in the 
winter of 1823-24. Parton brings the invaluable 
testimony of William B. Lewis as to the reason 
why and the way in which Jackson was elected. 1 
John Williams had been senator. His term ex- 
pired. He was an opponent of Jackson. He was 
a candidate for reelection, and was so strong that 
no Jackson man but Jackson himself could defeat 
him. Hence the men who were planning to make 
Jackson President, of whom Lewis was the chief, 
secured Jackson's election to the Senate. While 
the tariff question was pending, a convenient per- 
son Dr. Coleman, of Warrenton, Va. was 
found to interrogate Jackson about it. His letter 
in reply was the first of the adroit letters or mani- 
festoes by means of which the Jackson managers 
carried on the campaign in Jackson's favor. They 
developed this art of electioneering in a way then 
not conceived of by other factions. The letter to 
Coleman was a model letter of its kind. It said 
nothing clear or to the point on the matter in ques- 
tion, It used some ambiguous phrases which the 
reader could interpret to suit his own taste. It 
muddled the question by contradictory suggestions, 
i 3 Parton, 21. 


bearing upon it from a greater or less distance, 
and from all points of view, and it failed not to 
introduce enough glittering platitudes to make the 
whole pass current. Jackson voted for the tariff. 
He wrote to Lewis, May 7, 1824: 

" The articles of National Defence & National Inde- 
pendence, I will with my vote, foster & protect, without 
counting on cents & dollars; so that our own manu- 
facturers shall stand on a footing of fair competition with 
the labourers of Europe. In doing this, the articles all 
being of the product of our own country, tends to pro- 
mote the agriculturists, whilst it gives security to our 
nation & promotes Domestic Labour. The balance of 
the bill I look to with an eye to Revenue alone, to meet 
the national debt. These articles of National defence, 
are Hemp, iron, lead, & coarse woollen, and from the 
experience of last war every patriot will justify me in 
this course & if they do not, my own conscience ap- 
proves, & I will follow it regardless of any conse- 
quences." 1 

He also voted for a number of internal improve- 
ment schemes. These votes were afterwards quoted 
against him. 2 

Jackson was therefore fairly started as a candi- 
date for the presidency. Among all the remarka- 
ble accidents which opened his way to the first 
position in the country, it was not the least that he 
had William B. Lewis for a neighbor and friend. 
Lewis was the great father of the wire-pullers. 
He first practised in a masterly and scientific way 
1 Ford MSS. 2 38 Niles, 285. 


the art of starting movements, apparently spon- 
taneous, at a distance, and in a quarter from which 
they win prestige or popularity, in order that these 
movements may produce, at the proper time and 
place, the effects intended by the true agent, who, 
in the mean time, prepares to be acted on by the 
movement in the direction in which, from the be- 
ginning, he desired to go. On this system political 
activity is rendered theatrical. The personal in- 
itiative is concealed. There is an adjustment of 
roles, a mise en scene, and a constant consideration 
of effect. Each person acts on the other in pre- 
arranged ways. Cues are given and taken, and the 
effect depends on the fidelity of each to his part. 
The perfection of the representation is reached 
when the audience or spectators are disregarded 
until the finale, when the chief actor, having reached 
the denoument towards which he and his comrades 
have so long been laboring, comes to the footlights 
and bows to the " will of the people." Lewis 
showed great astuteness in his manosuvres. There 
was nothing vulgar about him. There was a cer- 
tain breadth of generalship about his proceedings. 
He was very farsighted and prudent. He had the 
great knowledge required by the wire-puller, 
knowledge of men, good judgment of the influ- 
ences which would be potent, if brought to bear on 
each man or group. He knew the class amongst 
whom Jackson's popularity was strongest. He 
knew their notions, prejudices, tastes, and instincts. 
He knew what motives to appeal to. He wrote 


very well. When he wanted to go straight to a 
point he could do so. When he wanted to pro- 
duce effects or suggest adroitly, without coming to 
the point, he could do that too. He also knew 
Jackson well. He no doubt sincerely loved and 
admired Jackson. He threw his whole soul into 
the undertaking to elect Jackson, but he never 
showed very markedly selfish or interested pur- 
poses in that connection. So long as Jackson was 
uninformed or unprejudiced on any matter, he was 
at the disposition of any one who had won his con- 
fidence, and who desired to influence him on that 
matter. He could then be led to accept any view 
of it which was put before him in a way to strike 
his mind. Lewis knew how to put a thing be- 
fore Jackson's mind. However, when Jackson had 
adopted any view or notion, his mind became set 
or biassed, and it was not easy, even for those who 
first influenced him, to deflect his mind from rigid- 
ity of inference, or his conduct from direct de- 
duction. He often outstripped the wishes and 
intentions of those who had moved him first. To 
contradict him, at that stage, would have been to 
break friendship. Lewis treated him with great 
tact, and influenced him very often, but he did 
not control him or manage him. It would have 
been a good thing for the country if no worse 
man than Lewis had ever gained influence over 

No doubt many people saw, as early as 1815, 
Jackson's availability as a presidential candidate. 


Aaron Burr wrote to his* son-in-law, Alston, Nov. 
20, 1815, 1 urging that Jackson should be brought 
forward as a candidate by whose might the caucus 
could be overthrown. Jackson wrote to Lewis, in 
1844, about " the book lately publeshed " " called 
the history of the last congress," "which under- 
takes to state the manner of my being brought out 
for the Presedency, and which says it originated 
with " " Col Burr & the militant Federalists." " 
I have to state that it is a base falsehood, that I 
ever received a letter from Col Burr on that sub- 
ject, or that I ever received a request from any 
Federalist to become a candidate for the Presi- 
dency That I received many from such repub- 
licans as Edward Livingston, as early as 1816 & 
17 to permit my name to be brought out for the 
Presedency is certainly true, but which I answered 
promptly I could not yield to their solicitation " 2 
Adams recognized Jackson's strength, as a candi- 
date, in . 1818 : " There is a considerable party dis- 
posed to bring forward Jackson as a candidate, and 
the services of his late campaign would have given 
him great strength, if he had not counteracted his 
own interest by several of his actions in it," 3 
having alienated Georgia, Kentucky, Virginia, all 
State rights men and Governors of States. 

Parton obtained from Lewis a description of the 

first steps towards Jackson's nomination. Lewis 

tells how he used Jackson's letters to Monroe to 

win influential federalists to Jackson's support. It 

1 Mayo, 171. 2 Ford MSS. 8 4 Adams, 198. 


was after Jackson's return from Florida, in 1821, 
that the project was definitely decided upon. At 
first Jackson rejected, with some temper, the sug- 
gestion that he could or would run for President. 
He did not consider himself the right sort of man, 
and he felt old and ill. In the spring of 1822 
Lewis went to North Carolina, and worked up his 
connections there for Jackson. On the 20th of 
July, 1822, the Tennessee Legislature made the 
formal nomination. During the next two years 
Jackson's supporters were gaining connections and 
undermining the caucus, for he was an independent 
candidate and a " disorganizer," because he was 
raised up outside of the machine, and without any 
consultation with the established party authorities. 
Certain features of Jackson's character have 
appeared already. We have seen some of his ele- 
ments of strength and some of his faults. The 
nation wanted to reward him for military achieve- 
ments and for a display of military virtues. They 
had discarded dukedoms, pensions, ribbons, and 
orders, and they had no sign of national gratitude 
to employ but election to civil office. So far Jack- 
son had not made public display of any qualities 
but those of a military man, and violence, indis- 
cretion, obstinacy, and quarrelsomeness. In the 
campaign, those who opposed him called him a 
"murderer." The only incidents of his life which 
the biographer can note, aside from his military 
service, are successive acts of impropriety and bad 
judgment. Senator Mills wrote of him that " he 


was considered extremely rash and inconsiderate ; 
tyrannical and despotic in his principles. A per- 
sonal acquaintance with him has convinced many 
who had these opinions that they were unfounded. 
He is very mild and amiable in his disposition, 
of great benevolence, and his manners, although 
formed in the wilds of the West, exceedingly pol- 
ished and polite. Everybody that knows him, 
loves him, and he is exactly the man with whom 
you [his wife] would be delighted. . . . He has 
all the ardor and enthusiasm of youth and is as 
free from guile as an infant. ... A personal ac- 
quaintance with him has dissipated all my preju- 
dices. . . . But with all Gen. Jackson's good and 
great qualities, I should be sorry to see him Presi- 
dent of the United States. His early education 
was very deficient, and his modes of thinking and 
habits of life partake too much of war and military 
glory." l Negatively, however, tl^ere was more to 
be said for Jackson. He was above every species 
of money vice ; he was chaste and domestic in his 
habits ; 2 he was temperate in every way ; he was 
not ambitious in the bad sense. Judge McNairy 
" speaks of Gen. Jackson as being less addicted to 
the vices and immoralities of youth, than any 
young man "with whom he was acquainted ; that he 

1 Mills's Letters, 31. 

2 The only contrary suggestion known is in Binns, 245. " This 
rough soldier, exposed all his life to those temptations which 
have conquered public men whom we still call good, could kiss 
little children with lips as pure as their ow,**/' Quincy ; Figures, 


never knew of his fighting cocks, or gambling, 
and, as for his being a libertine, as has been 
charged, the Judge says he was distinctly the re- 
verse of it. The truth is, as everybody here well 
knows, Gen. Jackson never was fond of any kind 
of sport, nor did he indulge in any except occa- 
sionally for amusement, but Horse-racing. This 
his friends are willing to admit, but even this he 
has quit for many years. I believe ever since the 
year 1810 or 1811." l 

There were already four other candidates in the 
field, who all belonged to the democratic-republican 
party. Niles gives an instance in which seven 
democrats met at Philadelphia, who all were for 
Schulze, the democratic candidate for Governor. 
Each candidate for President had a supporter 
among them, and no candidate had over two. 2 De 
Witt Clinton was not altogether out of considera- 
tion. A caucus of the South Carolina Legislature 
nominated Lowndes. 3 

John Quincy Adams stood first among the can- 
didates by his public services and experience. He 
was fifty-seven years old. He went to Europe with 
his father when he was eleven years old, and stud- 
ied there for several years. He was, through his 
father, intimate from his earliest youth with public 
and diplomatic affairs. As far as education and 
early training could go, he had the best outfit for 

1 Lewis to Haywood (1827) ; copy in Ford MSS. 

2 24 Niles, 369. 
8 5 Adams, 468. 


a statesman and diplomat. He enjoyed great re> 
spect. Those who thought that a man ought to 
advance to the presidency through lower grades of 
public employment looked upon him as the most 
suitable candidate. He was not a man of genius, 
but one of wide interests, methodical habits, and 
indefatigable industry. It is hard to see what he 
ever did, from his earliest youth, for amusement 
and entertainment. He would have been a better 
statesman if he had been more frivolous. He was 
unsocial in his manners, had few friends, and re- 
pelled those who would have been his friends. So 
far as we can learn, he engaged in no intrigues 
for the presidency. He certainly had the smallest 
and least zealous corps of workers. His weakness 
was that the great body of the voters did not have 
any feeling that a man with the qualifications which 
he possessed was needed for the presidential office. 
He had been a democrat since 1807, when he went 
over to the administration party because he believed 
that the New England federalists were plotting 
secession. His soundness in "democratic princi- 
ples " was doubted. He was earnestly disliked by 
all the active politicians. In the campaign he was 
called a "tory." He was charged with offering, 
at Ghent, to yield to the English the right of 
navigating the Mississippi, if they would renew 
the rights to fish in Canadian waters ; that is, with 
offering to sacrifice a western interest to serve an 
eastern one. He published a small volume to ex- 
pose the untruth of this charge and the character 


of the evidence by which it was supported. 1 In 
his own opinion, this attack helped him. 8 He 
in favor of the tariff as it stood in 1824. Hej 
thought that it gave enough protection. He 
also in favor of internal improvements, but thought 
that they might be abused. 3 He was accused of 
undemocratic care for etiquette, and also of sloven-! 
liness in dress. Mrs. Adams gave a ball in honor 
of Jackson, January 8, 1824. " It is the universal] 
opinion that nothing has ever equalled this party 
here, either in brilliancy of preparation or elegance] 
of the company." 4 

Calhoun enjoyed great popularity in New Eng- 
land, in New York city, and in Pennsylvania, as 
well as at home. He was forty-two years old, 
and was the ** young men's candidate." He had 
actively favored the tariff of 1816 and the Bank, 
and also plans for internal improvements. In 
October, 1822, Adams wrote: "Calhoun has no 
petty scruples about constructive powers and State j 
rights." 5 " He is ardent, persevering, industrious, 
and temperate, of great activity and quickness of 
perception and rapidity of utterance; as a poli- 
tician, too theorizing, speculative and metaphysical, 
magnificent in his views of the powers and 
capacities of the government and of the virtue, 
intelligence, and wisdom of the people. He is 
in favor of elevating, cherishing, and increasing 

i The Duplicate Letters, the Fisheries and die MranippL 
6 Adwns. 263. 6 Adams, 353, 451. 

* Milb's Letters, 30. Ad ;^. ft 


all the institutions of the government, and of a 
rigorous and energetic administration of it. From 
liis rapidity of thought, he is often wrong in 
liis* conclusions, and his theories are sometimes 
wild, extravagant, and impractical. He has always 
claimed to be, and is, of the democratic party, but 
of a very different class from that of Crawford ; 
more like Adams, and his schemes are sometimes 
denounced by his party as ultra-fanatical. His 
private character is estimable and exemplary, and 
liis devotion to his official duties is regular and 
severe, but he is formidably opposed on the ground 
of his youth, his inexperience, his heterodoxy in 
politics, and his ambition." l Calhouii and Adams 
had been strong friends, and there was some idea 
of putting Calhoun on the ticket with Adams until 
1822, when some members of Congress nominated 
Calhoun for President. 2 Webster preferred Cal- 
lioun to all the other candidates. 3 His brother 
wrote that Calhoun was the second choice of New 
Hampshire. 4 Calhoun took the War Department 
in 1817, when it was in great disorder. He had 
to bear a great deal of abuse before he got it in 
order, but later he was much praised for the system 
lie had introduced. 5 He and Crawford were espe- 
cial rivals, because Crawford was the "regular" 

1 Milk's Letters, 28. 

2 6 Adams, 42. 

8 1 Curtis's Webster, 218, 236. 

4 1 Webster's Correspondence, 323. 

5 26 Niles, 50. Adams thought this praise undeserved. 7 
Adams, 446. 


Virginia and Southern candidate. In 1822 at- 
tempts were made to injure Calhoun by an investi- 
gation of a contract for building the Rip Raps at 
Old Point Comfort. The contract was private, 
not competitive. He was exonerated by a com- 
mittee of the House. 1 As we shall see, Calhoun 
withdrew his name before the election. 

Crawford was the regular candidate. He was 
fifty-two years old. In 1798 he had been an " Ad- 
dresser," that is, an orthodox federalist. 2 He had 
also been a supporter of the old Bank, and had 
been the leader in the Senate for the renewal of 
its charter. He had also opposed the embargo. 3 
He had been very eagerly working for eight years 
to reach the presidency. In the campaign he was 
called an " intriguer." As Secretary of the Trea- 
sury, during the crisis of 1819, he had a very diffi- 
cult task to perform. He had undertaken even 
more than his duty required, for he had aimed 
to "do justice" between the banks, and to keep 
them from encroaching upon each other. To this 
end he distributed his deposits, and in some cases 
favored certain banks. When the crash came 
his funds were locked up in some of these banks. 
He was then open to the charge, which Ninian Ed- 
wards made over the signature U A. B.," that he 
had used the treasury funds to win political capital, 
and had corruptly put the funds in unsound banks. 
Crawford was exonerated by a committee of the 

1 ,22 Niles, 251. 2 24 Niles, 132. 

. 3 Cobb, 143. 


House, but he barely escaped ruin. 1 " He is a 
hardy, bold, resolute man, with the appearance of 
great frankness and openness of character, unpol- 
ished and somewhat rude in his manners, and very 
far inferior to Mr. Adams in learning and attain- 
ments. He has, however, a strong, vigorous mind, 
and has made himself what he is by his own active 
efforts. . . . He is now at the head of those who 
are here termed radicals " [extreme State rights 
men]. 2 He introduced the limited period of ser- 
vice, by the Act of May 15, 1820, into the Treasury 
Department. This act limits the period of office 
of all persons engaged in collecting the revenue to 
four years, at the expiration of which time they go 
out of office or come up for reappointment. 3 It is 
one of the most important steps in the history of 
the abuse of the civil service. Crawford was be- 
lieved by his colleagues to have sacrificed the ad- 
ministration to make capital for himself. Adams 
says that Crawford and Monroe quarrelled to the 
verge of violence during the last months of the 
administration. 4 In order to win strength for 
Crawford, Van Buren was nominated for Vice- 
President by the Legislature of Georgia. This 
proposition was overwhelmed by ridicule. 5 Craw- 

1 Folio State Papers ; 5 Finance. Edwards said that he made 
the charge under promises of support from Monroe, Jackson, Cal- 
houn, and Adams. Ford's Illinois, 63. 

2 Mills's Letters, 28. 

3 7 Adams, 424. 

4 7 Adams, 81. 

5 Cobb, 209. ' 


ford was physically disabled from September, 1823, 
to September, 1824. He could not sign his name, 
and was apparently a wreck. He used a f ac-simile 
stamp on public papers, or it was used by a mem- 
ber of his family under his direction. 

" Adams, Jackson, and Calhoun, all think well of 
each other, and are united at least in one thing, to 
wit, a most thorough dread and abhorrence of Craw- 
ford. Mr. Clay stands by himself, and, with many 
excellent qualities, would be more dangerous at the 
head of the government than either of the others. 
Ardent, bold, and adventurous in all his theories, he 
would be, as is feared, rash in enterprise, and in- 
considerate and regardless of consequences. His 
early education was exceedingly defective, and his 
morals have been not the most pure and correct." l 
Clay had already assumed the championship of 
the protective system. He had been one of the 
strongest opponents of the re-charter of the first 
Bank. He had also made " sympathy with nations 
struggling for liberty " one of his points, and had 
been zealous for the recognition of the South Amer- 
ican republics. He was a great party leader. He 
had just the power to win men to him and to in- 
spire personal loyalty, which Adams had not. On 
the other hand, he lacked industry. He was elo- 
quent, but he never mastered any subject which 
required study. His strength lay in facility and 
practical tact. He was forty-seven years old. He 
was stigmatized as a " gambler " by his opponents 

1 Mills's Letters, 32. 


in the campaign. From 1820 to 1823 he was not 
in public life, but was retrieving his private for- 
tunes. His enemies said that his affairs had been 
embarrassed by gambling. He was Speaker from 
1815 to 1820, and again from 1823 to 1825. He 
was one of the commissioners who made the treaty 
of Ghent. 

The Crawford men wanted a congressional caucus 
in 1824, because they had control of the machine. 
The supporters of the other candidates opposed any 
caucus, but secretly, because the caucus was now 
an established institution. The opponents of the 
caucus found a strong ally in Niles, who opened 
fire on the caucus in his " Register " without any 
reserve. His sincerity and singleness of purpose 
are beyond question. He did not use his paper to 
support any candidate. He was an old Jeffersonian 
republican of 1798, and he believed sincerely in 
all the "principles." He assailed the caucus, be- 
cause in his view it usurped the right of the people 
to govern themselves. He denounced it steadily 
for more than a year, and he succeeded in casting 
odium upon it. The Legislatures of New York and 
Virginia passed resolutions in favor of a caucus, 
because these two States, while united, could con- 
trol the presidency through the caucus. New York 
being rent by democratic faction fights, and Vir- 
ginia being led by a close oligarchy, New York 
became an appendage to Virginia in their coalition. 
Tennessee, South Carolina, Alabama and Mary- 
land adopted resolutions against the caucus. The 


legislature of Pennsylvania declared against a 
" partial caucus." 1 

The caucus met in the chamber of the House 
of ^Representatives February 14, 1824. 2 Of 216 
democrats in Congress, 66 were present. Two, 
who were ill at home, sent proxies. If proxies 
were allowable, the members of Congress, when 
assembled in presidential caucus, must have been 
regarded as independent powers, possessed of a 
prerogative, like peers or sovereigns. The vote 
was : Crawford, 64 ; Adams, 2 ; Jackson, 1 ; Macon, 
1 : i. e., all but the Crawford men stayed away. 
Gallatin was nominated for Vice-President by 57 
votes. An address was published, defending the 
caucus, and arguing its indispensability to the 
party. 3 Some question was raised about Gallatin's 
eligibility on account of his foreign birth, but he 
possessed the alternative qualification allowed by 
the Constitution. He nad been a commissioner at 
Ghent and a friend of Crawford. His nomination 
did not strengthen the ticket. There was still a 
great deal of rancor against him for forsaking the 
Treasury Department when the war of 1812 broke 
out. 4 He soon withdrew his name because the 
caucus was so unpopular. 

Martin Van Buren was chief engineer of the last 
congressional caucus. He was senator from New 

1 6 Adams, 232. 

2 25 Niles, 388. 
8 25 Niles, 391. 

4 See a strong expression of it as late as 1832 in 42 Niles, 435. 


York. He and his friends, under the new Consti- 
tution of 1821, had established a very efficient 
party organization, which they had well in hand. 
They were known as the Regency, and they had 
renewed the alliance with Virginia to control the 
machine and elect Crawford. A project which 
threatened to mar their scheme was the proposi- 
tion, in 1823, to take the election of presidential 
electors from the Legislature of New York and give 
it to the people. The Regency-Tammany party 
opposed this, as it would render useless all their 
machinery. The advocates of the change, who were 
the opponents of Crawford, Tammany, and the 
Regency, formed the " people's party." Clinton 
was for Jackson, so he was allied with the people's 
party against Crawford. Although Clinton was 
the soul of the canal enterprise, he was removed 
from his office of canal commissioner to try to 
break up this combination. It would never do for 
the Regency to oppose directly and openly a pro- 
position to give the election to the people. When 
the law was proposed, the Regency managed to 
twist it into such preposterous shape that a general 
ticket was to be voted for, and if there should not 
be a majority (which, with four in the field, was a 
very probable result) the State would lose its vote. 
The bill passed the House, but was defeated in the 
Senate. 1 The popular indignation was so great 
that the next Legislature was carried by the peo- 
ple's party, and a joint ticket of electors was 
1 2 Hammond, 132. 


elected, on which were 25 Adams men, 7 Clay men, 
and 4 Crawford men. 1 Some of them must have 
changed their votes before the election. 

A federalist convention at Harrisburg, Pennsyl- 
vania, February 22, 1824, nominated Jackson. 2 
At a primary meeting at Philadelphia, Dallas 
withdrew Calhoun's name from the first place 
and nominated him for the second. Calhoun was 
strong in Pennsylvania, but Jackson had super- 
seded him. This move was a coalition of Jack- 
son and Calhoun. Jackson wrote to Lewis, from 
Washington, March 31, 1824 : 

"On the subject of M r Calhoune, I have no doubt 
myself, but his friends acted agreeable to his under- 
standing & instructions ; & that he is sincere in his 
wishes some have doubted this, but I have not and 
I can give you when we meet reasons that will convince 
you I cannot be mistaken as far as his friends to the 
south have acted, it is conformable to this ; & I have no 
doubt but both the Carolinas will unite in my support 
You have seen the result of Pennsylvania New York 
is coming out and it is said some of the Newengland 
States ; a few weeks will give us the result of the move- 
ment of New York if Crawford is not supported in 
that State I have but little doubt but he will be droped, 
and from what you will see in the National intelligences 
of this morning M r Clay taken up. I have no doubt if 
I was to travel to Boston where I have been invited that 
it would ensure my election But this I cannot do 

1 27 Niles, 186. Hammond's statement is obscure. See 1 
Hammond, 177. 

2 1 Sargent, 41. 


I would feel degraded the ballance of my life If I 
ever fill that office it must be the free choice of the 
people I can then say I am the President of the 
nation and my acts shall comport with that char- 
acter." 1 

The understanding was that Jackson would take 
only one term, and that his friends would then 
secure the succession to Calhoun. 

The democratic convention at Harrisburg, March 
4th, was stampeded for Jackson. Only one vote was 
given against him. 2 Another democratic conven- 
tion, called " regular," was convened August 9th. 
It repudiated Jackson and adhered to Crawford. 3 
Jackson and his followers were denounced as " dis- 
organizers." The Albany " Argus " said of Jack- 
son, " It is idle in this State, however it may be in 
others, to strive even for a moderate support of 
Mr. Jackson. He is wholly out of the question as 
far as the votes of New York are in it. Independ- 
ently of the disclosures of his political opinions, he 
could not be the republican candidate. He is re- 
spected as a gallant soldier, but he stands, in the 
minds of the people of this State, at an immeasur- 
able distance from the executive chair." 4 The 
"Argus " swallowed its words a little later, without 
a sign of indigestion. It knew that, when the dem- 
ocratic Leviathan takes a self-willed freak, he is 
the wisest leader who follows most humbly. After 
it had reversed itself, any one who held the very 

1 Ford MSS. 2 26 Niles, 20. 

8 1 Sargent, 42. 4 Quoted 49 Niles, 188. 


judicious opinion embodied in this paragraph was 
denounced by it as a "federalist," which was as 
much as to say, an enemy of the American people. 
Niles says that Calhoun opposed Jackson in a pub- 
lic speech, in 1822, because he was the candidate 
of the Bank of the United States, and his election 
would unite " the purse and the sword." l Jeffer- 
son said : " I feel very much alarmed at the pro- 
spect of seeing General Jackson President. He is 
one of the most unfit men I know of for the place. 
He has had very little respect for laws or constitu- 
tions, and is, in fact, an able military chief. His 
passions are terrible. . . . He has been much tried 
since I knew him, but he is a dangerous man." 2 
On the contrary, Jackson's courtly bearing won 
for him all the ladies. Webster wrote : " General 
Jackson's manners are more presidential than those 
of any of the candidates. He is grave, mild, and 
reserved. My wife is for him decidedly." 3 Jack- 
son's friends induced him to have a kind of recon- 
ciliation with Scott, Clay, and Benton. The last 
was a supporter of Clay, but when Clay was out of 
the contest he turned to Jackson. 4 Adams says 
that Benton joined Jackson after Jackson's friends 
obtained for him the nomination as minister to 
Mexico. When Adams came in he would not 

1 22 Niles, 73. 

2 1 Webster's Correspondence, 371. 

8 1 Webster's Correspondence, 346. See, also, Quincy, Figures, 
4 He went first to Crawford, then to Jackson. Cobb, 215. 

VOTE OF 1824 115 

ratify the appointment. 1 During the winter some 
sort of a peace was made between Jackson and 
Crawford. 2 

The result of the electoral vote was: Jackson, 
99; Adams, 84; Crawford, 41; Clay, 37. For 
Vice-President the vote was : Calhoun, 182 ; San- 
ford, 30 ; Macon, 24 ; Jackson, 13 ; Van Buren, 
9 ; Clay, 2 ; blank, 1. New York voted : Jackson, 
1 ; Adams, 26 ; Crawford, 5 ; Clay, 4. The elect- 
ors were chosen by the Legislature in Delaware, 
Georgia, Louisiana, New York, South Carolina, 
and Vermont. In the other States the popular 
vote stood (in round numbers) : Jackson, 155,800 ; 
Adams, 105,300 ; Crawford, 44,200 ; Clay, 46,500. 
The second choice of Clay's States (Ohio, Ken- 
tucky, and Missouri) was Jackson. In Pennsyl- 
vania, Jackson had 36,000 votes, and all the others 
together had less than 12,000. Only about one 
third of the vote of the State was polled, because 
it was known that Jackson would carry it over- 
whelmingly. 3 Ten years later Adams wrote about 
the people of Pennsylvania, " whose fanatical pas- 
sion for Andrew Jackson can be compared to 
nothing but that of Titania, Queen of the Fairies, 
for Bottom after his assification." 4 

The intriguing for the election now entered on 
a new stage. Clay was out of the contest in the 
House, but he had great influence there, and it 
has often been asserted that the House would have 

1 6 Adams, 522. 2 6 Adams, 478, 485. 

8 27 Niles, 186. * 9 Adams, 160. 


elected him if his name had come before it as one 
of the three highest. He was courted by all parties. 
It would be tedious to collect the traces of various 
efforts to form combinations. The truth seems to 
be this : Washington was filled during the winter 
with persons, members of Congress and others, who 
were under great excitement about the election. 
All sorts of busybodies were running about, talk- 
ing and planning, and proposing what seemed to 
each to be good. Persons who were in Washing- 
ton, and were cognizant of some one line of intrigue, 
or of the activity of some one person, have left 
records of what they saw or heard, and have ve- 
hemently maintained each that his evidence gives 
the only correct clew to the result. Each candi- 
date's name is connected with some intrigue, or 
some proposition for a coalition. In no case is the 
proposition or intrigue brought home to the prin- 
cipal party as a conscious or responsible partici- 
pator, and yet it appears that the negotiations 
were often of such a character that they could 
have been taken up and adopted, if they had 
proved satisfactory. 

The election in the House took place February 
9, 1825. On the first ballot, Adams obtained the 
votes of thirteen States, Jackson of seven, and 
Crawford of four. For the first few days Jack- 
son seemed to bear his defeat good-naturedly, 
although he had written to Lewis, as early a* 
January 29 : 

VOTE OF 1824 117 

" You will see from the public Journals the stand M r 
Clay has taken for M r Adams This was such an un- 
expected course, that self-agrandizement, and corruption, 
by many are attached to his motives . . . 

" Intrigue, corruption, and sale of public office is the 
rumor of the day How humiliating to the american 
character that its high functionaries should so conduct 
themselves, as to become liable to the imputation of 
bargain & sale of the constitutional rights of the 
people." ] 

He met Adams on the evening of the election 
at the President's reception, and bore himself much 
the better of the two. 2 

It was soon rumored that Clay was to be Sec- 
retary of State. After a few days he accepted 
that post. The charge of a corrupt bargain be- 
tween him and Adams was then started. It was 
an inference from Clay's appointment, and nothing 
more. Any man can judge to-day, as well as any 
one could in 1824, whether that fact leads straight 
and necessarily to that inference. Not a particle 
of other evidence ever was alleged. We have 
never had any definition of the proper limits of 
combinations, bargains, and pledges in politics, but 
an agreement to make Clay Secretary of State, if 
made, could not be called a corrupt bargain. He 
was sucb a man that he was a fit and proper 
person for the place. No one would deny that. 
Therefore no public interest would be sacrificed or 
abused by his appointment. A corrupt bargain 

1 Ford MSS. 2 Cobb, 226; 1 Curtis's Buchanan, 43. 


must be one in which there is collusion for private 
gain at the expense of the public welfare. Bar- 
gains which avoid this definition must yet be toler- 
ated in all political systems, although they impair 
the purity of any system. 

The men around Jackson Eaton, Lewis, Liv- 
ingston, Lee, Swartwout knew the value of the 
charge of corrupt bargain for electioneering pur- 
poses, and the political value of the appeal to Jack- 
son's supporters on the ground that he had been 
cheated out of his election. Did not they first 
put the idea into Jackson's head that he had been 
cheated by a corrupt bargain ? Is not that the ex- 
planation of his change of tone from the lofty 
urbanity of the President's assembly to the rancor- 
ous animosity of a few days afterwards ? Such a 
conjecture fits all the circumstances and all the 
characters. The men around Jackson might see 
the value of the charge, and use it, without ever 
troubling themselves to define just how far they be- 
lieved in it ; but Jackson would not do that. Such 
a suggestion would come to him like a revelation, 
and his mind would close on it with a solidity of 
conviction which nothing ever could shake. Feb- 
ruary 20th, he wrote to Lewis : 

" But when we see the predictions verified on the re- 
sult of the Presidential election when we behold two 
men political enemies, and as different in political sen- 
timents as any men can be, so suddenly unite ; there must 
be some unseen cause to produce this political phenomena 
- This cause is developed by applying the rumors be- 


fore the election, to the result of that election, and to 
the tendering of and the acceptance of the office of Sec. 
of State by M r Clay. These are facts that will confirm 
every unbiasased mind, that there must have been & were 
a secret understanding between M r Adams & M r Clay 
of and concerning these seems of corruptoon, that has 
occasioned M r Clay to abandon the will, and wishes of 
the people of the west, and to form the coalition so ex- 
traordinary as the one he has done. 

From M r Clays late conduct, my opinion of 
him, long ago expressed, is best realized from his con- 
duct on the Seminole question, I then pronounced him a 
political Gambler ... I have, now, no doubt, 
but I have had opposed to me all the influence of the 
Cabinet, except Calhoune would it not be well that 
the papers of Nashville & the whole State should speak 
out, with moderate but firm disapprobation of this cor- 
ruption to give a proper tone to the people & to draw 
their attention to the subject When I see you I have 
much to say There is more corruption than I antici- 
pated ; and as you know I thought there was enough 
of it." l 

Benton always scouted the notion of the bar- 
gain. 2 He says that he knew before Adams did, 
that Clay intended to vote for Adams. 3 Benton 
would not follow Clay. Clay and Jackson had 
had no intercourse since the Seminole war affair. 
The Tennessee delegation patched up a reconcilia- 

1 Ford MSS. 

2 Ibid. 

8 1 Benton, 48 ; see his letter of Dec. 27, 1827, in Truth's Ad- 
vocate, 63. 


tion in 1824. 1 Clay's reason for voting for Adams 
was that Crawford was incapacitated by broken 
health, 2 and that a military hero was not a fit person 
to be President. January 8th Clay wrote to F. P. 
Blair 3 that the friends of all the candidates were 
courting him, but that he should vote for Adams. 
January 24th Clay and the majority of the Ohio 
and Kentucky delegations declared that they would 
vote for Adams. In a letter to F. Brooke, January 
28, 1825, Clay stated that he would vote for Adams 
for the reasons given. 4 The Clay men generally 
argued that if Jackson was elected he would keep 
Adams in the State Department. It would then 
be difficult, in 1828, to elect Clay, another western 
man ; but Adams would have more strength. If 
Adams should be elected in 1824, the election of 
Clay, as a western man, in 1828, would be easier, 
especially if Adams would give him the Secretary- 
ship. 5 On the 25th of January, the day after the 
western delegations came out for Adams, an an- 
onymous letter appeared in the " Columbian Obser- 
ver," of Philadelphia, predicting a bargain between 
Adams and Clay. Kremer, member of the House 

1 Clay's Speech, 1838 ; 54 Niles, 68. 

2 Crawford was taken to the Capitol for a few hours, a day or 
two before the election, but he was apparently a wreck. Cobb, 

3 Blair and Kendall, in 1824, were Clay men. They were both 
active, in 1825, in urging Clay men to vote for Adams. 40 Niles, 
73 ; Telegraph Extra, 300 et seq. 

4 27 Niles, 386. 

5 Telegraph Extra, 321. 


from Pennsylvania, avowed his responsibility for 
the letter, although it has generally been believed 
that he could not have written it. Clay demanded 
an investigation in the House, and a committee was 
raised, but Kremer declined to answer its interro- 
gatories. The letter was another case of the gene- 
ral device of laying down anchors for strains which 
would probably need to be exerted later. It would 
not do for Kremer to admit that the assertion in 
the letter was only a surmise of his. It certainly 
was a clever trick. The charge would either pre- 
vent Clay from going into Adams's cabinet, lest he 
should give proofs of the truth of the imputation, 
or, if he did go into the cabinet, this letter would 
serve as a kind of evidence of a bargain. Imme- 
diately after the inauguration, Kremer made this 
latter use of it in an address to his constituents. 1 
On the 20th of February, Jackson wrote a letter 
to Lewis, in which he affirmed and condemned the 
bargain. Lewis published this letter in Tennessee. 
February 22d, Jackson wrote a letter to Swartwout, 
in which he spoke very bitterly of Clay, and re- 
sented Clay's criticism of him as a " military 
chieftain." He sneered at Clay as not a military 
chieftain. But he did not allege any bargain. 
Swartwout published this letter in New York. 2 
Both letters were plainly prepared by Jackson's 
followers for publication. Clay replied at the end 
of March in a long statement. 3 

Jackson remained in Washington until the mid- 
< 28 Niles, 21. 2 28 Niles, 20. 3 28 Niles, 71. 


die of March. He was present at the inauguration, 
and preserved all the forms in his public demeanor 
towards Adams. 1 His rage was all directed against 
Clay. In the Senate there were fifteen votes 
against Clay's confirmation, but no charges were 
made there. 2 On his way home Jackson scattered 
the charge as he went. It is to his own lips that 
it is always traceable, when it can be brought home 
to anybody. Up to this time it is questionable 
whether Jackson was more annoyed or pleased at 
being run for President. Now that the element of 
personal contest was imported into the enterprise, 
his whole being became absorbed in the determi- 
nation to achieve victory. There was now a foe to 
be crushed, a revenge to be obtained for an injury 
endured. He did not measure his words, and the 
charge gained amplitude and definiteness as he 
repeated it. In March, 1827, Carter Beverly, of 
North Carolina, wrote to a friend an account of a 
visit to Jackson, and a report of Jackson's circum- 
stantial assertion, at his own table, that Clay's 
friends offered to support Jackson, if Jackson 
would promise not to continue Adams as Secretary 
of State. Beverly's letter was published at Fay- 
etteville, North Carolina. 3 In June, Jackson 
wrote to Beverly an explicit repetition over his 
own signature.* The charge had now a name and 
a responsible person behind it, Jackson himself. 

1 28 Niles, 19. 

2 Branch made some allusions and vague comments. 33 Niles, 
22. 8 32 .Niles, 162. 4 32 Niles, 315. 


Clay at once called on him for his authorities and 
proofs. Jackson named Buchanan as his au- 
thority. 1 Buchanan had been one of the active 
ones 2 that winter, but he had blundered. He now 
made a statement which was not straightforward 
either way, but it did not support Jackson's state- 
ment. He distinctly said that he had never been 
commissioned by the Clay men for anything he 
had said to Jackson about appointing Adams. 3 
Clay then called on Jackson to retract, since his 
only authority had failed. Jackson made no an- 
swer. He never forgave Buchanan. In 1842, 
Carter Beverly wrote to Clay that the charge had 
never been substantiated, and that he regretted 
having helped to spread it. 4 At Maysville, in 1843, 
Adams made a solemn denial of the charge. 5 May 
3, 1844, Jackson reiterated the charge in a letter to 
the " Nashville Union." He said : " Of the charges 
brought against Mr. Adams and Mr. Clay at that 
time, I formed my opinions, as the country at large 
did, from facts and circumstances which were in- 
disputable and conclusive, and I may add that this 
opinion has undergone no change." 6 Of course 
this means that he inferred the charge from Clay's 
appointment, never had any other ground for it, 
and therefore had as much ground in 1844 as in 
1825. Clay never escaped the odium of this charge 
while he lived. At Lexington, Ky., in 1842, he 

1 32 Niles, 415. 2 Markley's Letter, 33 Niles, 167. 

3 32 Niles, 416 ; 1 Curtis's Buchanan, 42, 511. 

4 61 Niles, 408. 5 11 Adams, 431. 6 66 Niles, 247. 


said that he thought he should have been wiser if 
he had not taken office under Adams. 1 

On the publication of Adams's " Diary," proba- 
bly all students of American political history turned 
to see what relations with Clay were noted in the 
winter of 182425. Clay and Adams had never 
been intimate. Their tastes were by no means 
congenial. There was an " adjourned question of 
veracity " outstanding between them, because Clay 
had given vague support to the charge against 
Adams about the fisheries and the Mississippi, and 
Adams had challenged him to produce the proof, 
which would impeach Adams's own story of the 
negotiations at Ghent. Clay had never answered. 
December 17, 1824, Letcher, as one of Clay's near- 
est friends, called on Adams. "The drift of all 
Letcher 's discourse was . . . that Clay would will- 
ingly support me, if he could thereby serve him- 
self, and the substance of his meaning was, that if 
Clay's friends could know that he would have a 
prominent share in the administration, that might 
induce them to vote for me, even in the face of in- 
structions. But Letcher did not profess to have 
any authority from Clay for what he said, and he 
made no definite propositions." 2 January 1, 1825, 
Clay and Adams met by Letcher 's intervention. 3 
Adams recorded in 1828 4 that Letcher told him, 
January 2, 1825, that Kentucky would vote for 
him. January 9th Clay told Adams that he should 

1 62 Niles, 291. 2 6 Adams, 447. 

3 Cf. 8 Adams, 337 (1831). * 7 Adams, 462. 


vote for him, and said that Crawford's friends and 
Adams's friends had approached him with personal 
considerations. January 21st Scott, of Missouri, 
who held the vote of that State, told Adams 
that he wanted Clay to be in the administration. 
Adams replied that he could give no assurances, 
but that, in looking for a western man, he could 
not overlook Clay. On the same day, in answer 
to fears that he would proscribe the federalists, he 
answered that he would try to break up the old 
parties. February 3d Webster called on Adams 
about the proscription of the federalists. 1 Adams 
said that he could give no assurances about his 
cabinet, but would try to harmonize parties. 2 

The Jackson men found another grievance in the 
election of Adams. They revived a doctrine which 
had been advocated in 1801, to the effect that the 
House of Representatives ought simply to carry 
out " the will of the people," as indicated by the 
plurality vote. Benton is the chief advocate of 
this doctrine. 3 He faces all the consequences of it 
without flinching. He says plainly that there was 
a struggle " between the theory of the Constitution 
and the democratic principle." The Constitution 

1 The federalists all hated Adams for "ratting." In 1828, 
Timothy Pickering was a Jackson man ; not that he loved demo- 
cracy more, but that he hated Jackson less. 34 Niles, 246. 

2 1 Curtis's Webster, 237. 

3 31 Niles, 98, gives a homely hut very pungent criticism of 
Bentoii's doctrine. It consists in showing what the " will of the 
people" is, when the State divisions, Senate equality, and negro 
representation are taken into account. 


gives to the House of Representatives the right 
and power to elect the President in a certain con- 
tingency. There is no provision at all in the Con- 
stitution for the election of President by a great 
national democratic majority. The elected Presi- 
dent is the person who gets a majority of the votes 
constitutionally described and cast, and the power 
and right of the House of Representatives, in tho 
contingency which the Constitution provides for, is 
just as complete as that of the electoral college in 
all other cases. But the electoral college by no 
means necessarily produces the selection which ac- 
cords with the majority of the popular vote. The 
issue raised by Benton and his friends was there- 
fore nothing less than constitutional government 
versus democracy. The Constitution does not put 
upon the House the function of raising a plurality 
vote to a majority, for the obvious reason that it 
would be simpler to let a plurality elect. The Con- 
stitution provides only specified ways for ascertain- 
ing " the will of the people," and that will does 
not rule unless it is constitutionally expressed. 
That is why we are, fortunately, under a consti- 
tutional system, and not under an unlimited and 
ever-changing democracy. Benton and those who 
agreed with him were, as he avows, making an 
assault on the Constitution, when they put forward 
their doctrine of the function of the House. On 
that doctrine the Constitution is every one's tool 
while it answers his purposes, and the sport of 
every faction which finds it an obstacle, if they can 


only manage to carry an election. Their might 
and their right become one and the same thing, 
guarantees of each other. Such a doctrine is one 
of the most pernicious political heresies. A con- 
stitution is to a nation what self-control under 
established rules of conduct is to a man. The 
only time when it is of value is just the time when 
the temptation to violate it is strong, and that is 
the time when it contravenes temporary and party 

In its practical aspects, also, the election of 1824 
showed how pernicious and false Benton's doctrine 
is. " The will of the people," to which he referred 
as paramount, was an inference only. The mo- 
ment we depart from constitutional methods of 
ascertaining the will of the people, we shall always 
be driven to inferences which will, in the last ana- 
lysis, be found to rest upon nothing but party pre- 
judices and party hopes. In the vote of 1824 the 
facts were as follows : Clay's States indicated, as 
their second choice, Jackson. Jackson's friends 
inferred that, if Clay had not been running, Jack- 
son would have carried those States and would have 
been elected. Going farther, however, we find that 
in New Jersey and Maryland the Crawford men 
supported Jackson to weaken Adams. In North 
Carolina, Adams men supported Jackson to weaken 
Crawford. In Louisiana, Adams men and Jackson 
men combined to weaken Clay. 1 Hence Jackson 
got the whole or a part of the vote of these four 

1 1 Annual Register, 40. 


States by bargain and combination. How many 
more undercurrents of combination and secondary 
intention there may have been is left to conjecture. 
What then becomes of the notion of " the will of 
the people," as some pure and sacred emanation 
only to be heard and obeyed ? No election pro- 
duces any such pure and sacred product, but only a 
practical, very limited, imperfect, and approximate 
expression of public opinion, by which we manage 
to carry on public affairs. The " demos krateo 
principle," to use Ben ton's jargon, belongs in the 
same category with Louis Fourteenth's saying : 
L'etat, tfest moi. One is as far removed from con- 
stitutional liberty as the other. 
( Let it be noted, however, that this suggestion of 
Benton was far more than a preposterous notion 
which we can set aside by a little serious discus- 
sion. He touched the portentous antagonism which 
is latent in the American system of the State, 
the antagonism between the democratic principle 
and the constitutional institutions. The grandest 
issue that can ever arise in American political life 
is whether, when that antagonism is developed into 
active conflict, the democratic principle or the con- 
stitutional institution will prevail.) 

Crawford went home to Georgia, disappointed, 
broken in health, his political career entirely 
ended. He recovered his health to some extent. 
He became a circuit judge, and gave to Calhoun, 
five years later, very positive evidence that he was 
still alive. He died in 1834. 


THE presidential office underwent a great change 
at the election of 1824. The congressional caucus 
had, up to that time, proceeded on the theory that 
the President was to be a great national statesman, 
who stood at the head of his party, or among the 
leaders of it. There were enthusiastic rejoicings 
that " King Caucus " was dethroned and dead. 
What killed the congressional caucus was the fact 
that, with four men running, the adherents of three 
of them were sure to combine against the caucus, 
on account of the advantage which it would give to 
the one who was expected to get its nomination. 
However, it was a great error to say that King 
Caucus was dead. Looking back on it now, we 
see that the caucus had only burst the bonds of 
the chrysalis state and entered on a new stage 
of life and growth. 

Jackson was fully recognized as the coming man, 
There was no fighting against his popularity. The 
shrewdest politician was he who should seize upon 
that popularity as an available force, and prove 
capable of controlling it for his purposes. Van 
Buren proved himself to be the man for this func- 


tion. He usurped the position of Jackson leader 
in New York, which seemed by priority to belong 
to Clinton. He and the other Crawford leaders 
had had a hard task to run a man who seemed to 
be physically incapacitated for the duties of the 
presidency, but when Crawford's health broke 
down it was too late for them to change the whole 
plan of their campaign. After the election they 
joined the Jackson party. The " era of good feel- 
ing " had brought into politics a large number of 
men, 1 products of the continually advancing politi- 
cal activity amongst the less educated classes, who 
were eager for notoriety and spoils, for genteel liv- 
ing without work, and for public position. These 
men were ready to be the janizaries of any party 
which would pay well. They all joined the oppo- 
sition, because they had nothing to expect from^the 
administration. All the factions except the Adams 
faction, that is to say, all the federalists and all the 
non-Adams personal factions of the old republican 
party, went into opposition. These elements were 
very incoherent in their political creeds and their 
political codes, but they made common cause. 2 
They organized at once an opposition of the most 
violent and factious kind. Long before any politi- 
cal questions arose, they developed a determination 
to oppose to the last whatever the administration 
should favor. They fought for four years to make 

1 3 Ann. Beg. 10. 

2 The new groupings caused intense astonishment to simple- 
minded observers. See 32 Niles, 339. 


capital for the next election, as the chief business 
of Congress. John Randolph, who by long practice 
had become a virtuoso in abuse, exhausted his 
powers in long tirades of sarcasm and sensational 
denunciations, chiefly against Clay. The style 
of smartness which he was practising reached its 
climax when he called the administration an alli- 
ance of Blifil and Black George, the Puritan and 
the Black-leg. He and Clay fought a duel, on 
which occasion, however, Randolph fired in the air. 
After Jackson's election, Randolph was given the 
mission to Russia, and was guilty of a number of 
the abuses which he had scourged most freely in 
others. He had to endure hostile criticism, as a 
matter of course, and he learned the misery of a 
public man forced to make " explanations " under 
malignant charges. He proved to be as thin- 
skinned as most men of his stamp are when their 
turn comes. 1 

Van Buren initiated the opposition into the 
methods and doctrines of New York politics. Ever 
since the republicans wrested that State from the 
federalists, in 1800, they had been working out the 
methods of organization by which an oligarchy of 
a half dozen leaders could, under the forms of de- 
mocratic-republican self-government, control the 
State. As soon as the federalists were defeated, 
the republicans broke up into factions. Each fac- 
tion, when it gained power, proscribed the others. 
Until 1821 the patronage, which was the cohesive 
1 2 Garland's Randolph, 339. 


material by which party organization was cemented, 
was in the hands of a " council " at Albany. After 
1821 the patronage, by way of reform, was con- 
verted into elective offices. It then became neces- 
sary to devise a new system adapted to this new 
arrangement, and all the arts by which the results 
of primaries, conventions, committees, and cau- 
cuses, while following all the forms of spontaneous 
action, can be made to conform to the programme 
of the oligarchy or the Boss, were speedily devel- 
oped. If now the presidency ^ wa^^no^oiiger to be 
the,firown of public service, and the prize of a very 
limited number of statesmen of national reputa- 
tion, if it was conceivable that an Indian- fighter 
like Jackson could come within the range of, choice, 
then the presidency must, be ever aiter the. posi- 
tion reserved for popular heroes, or, in the absence 
of such, for " available " men, as the figure-heads 
with and around whom a faction of party leaders 
could come to power. King Caucus was not dead, 
then. He had lost a town and gained an empire. 
It remained to develop and extend over the whole 
country an organization of which the public service 
should constitute the network. There would be 
agents everywhere to receive and execute orders, 
to keep watch, and to make reports. The central 
authority would dispose of the whole as a general 
disposes of his army. The general of the " outs " 
would recruit his forces from those, who hoped for 
places when the opposition should come in. As 
there were two or three " outs " who wanted each 


place held by those who were " in," recruits were 
not lacking. It was during Adams's administra- 
tion that the opposition introduced -on the federal 

. . . i-,,, imn i i'n iiiiqjLnii""'" i- LI iflT*n*n<i"i~ v - v 

arena the method of organizing federatsparties by 
the use of the spoils, which method had been previ- 
ously perfected in the State politics of New York. 
The opposition invented and set in action two 
or three new institutions. They organized local 
Jackson eomrnjttees up and down the country, 
somewhat on the plan of the old revolutionary 
committees of correspondence and safety. It was 
the duty of these committees ^cjjpjjjjin^ v a,,pEopa- 
ganda for Jackson, to contradict and refute charges 
against him. to make known his services, to assail 
the administration, and to communicate facts, ar- 
guments, reports, etc., .to^each... other. Jackson 
had had a " literary Bureau " at work in Washing- 
ton in 1824. He wrote to tell Lewis who the 
writers were, viz. Eaton, Houston, and Isaacs. He 
mentioned a case in which Eaton was conducting 
both sides of a discussion, on the approved plan, 
under two pseudonyms. 1 Partisan newspaper 
writing was also employed to an unprecedented 
extent. The partisan editor, who uses his paper 
to reiterate and inculcate statements of fact and 
doctrine designed to affect- the mind of the voter, 
was not a new figure in politics, but now there 
appeared all over the country small local news- 
papers, edited by men who assumed the attitude 
of party advocates, and pursued one side only of 
i Ford MSS. 


all public questions, disregarding truth, right, 
and justice, determined only to win. In 1826, at 
Calhoun's suggestion, an " organ " was started at 
Washington, the^ 4 Telegraph," edited by Duff 
Green, of Missouri. The organ gave the key to 
all the local party newspapers. 

Adams showed, in his inaugural, some feeling 
of the unfortunate and unfair circumstances of his 
position. He said : " Less possessed of your confi- 
dence in advance than any of my predecessors, I 
am deeply conscious of the prospect that I shall 
stand more and oftener in need of your indul- 
gence." In October, the Legislature of Tennessee 
nominated Jackson for 1828, and he appeared be- 
fore the Legislature to receive an address and to 
make a reply. He resigned the senatorship in a 
very careful and well-written letter, 1 in which he 
urged (referring, as everybody understood, to 
Clay's appointment) that an amendment to the 
Constitution should be adopted forbidding the ap- 
pointment to an office in the gift of the President 
of any member of Congress during, or for two 
years after, his term of office in Congress. 2 In 
this letter he said that the senatorship had been 

1 29 Niles, 156. 

2 Robert G. Harper once testified in a court of law his personal 
belief, founded on general knowledge and inference, that Burr 
could have been elected in 1801, if he would have used " certain 
means," and his belief that Jefferson did use those means. 23 
Niles, 282. He referred to the appointment by Jefferson to 
lucrative offices of Linn, of New Jersey, and Claiborne, of Ten- 
nessee (each of whom controlled the vote of a State), and also 


given to him in 1823 without effort or solicitation ; 
also that he made it a rule neither to seek nor de- 
cline office. In his speech before the Legislature 
he spoke more freely of the corruption at Wash- 
ington, from which he sought to escape by resign- 
ing. 1 He now had Livingston, Eaton, Lee, Van 
Buren, Benton, Swartwout, Duff Green, and Lewis 
managing his canvas, some of them at Washington 
and some in Tennessee. They kept close watch 
over him, and maintained constant communication 
with each other. 

The first overt acts of the opposition were the 
objection to Clay's confirmation, and the rejection 
of the treaty with Colombia. Clay had been a 
champion of the South American republics, and 
everything in the way of intimacy with them was 
capital for him. These votes occurred in March, 
1825. The " Annual Register," commenting, over 
a year later, on these votes, said : " The divisions 
which had been taken on the foregoing questions 
[those mentioned] left little doubt that the new 
administration was destined to meet with a sys- 
tematic and organized opposition, and, previous to 
the next meeting of Congress, the ostensible 
grounds of opposition were set forth at public 

of Livingston, who could have divided the vote of New York. 36 
Niles, 197. According to a return made to a call by Congress 
in 1826, the number of members of Congress appointed to office 
by the Presidents down to that time was : by Washington, 10 ; by 
Adams, 13 ; by Jefferson, 25 ; by Madison, 29 ; by Monroe, 35 ; 
by J. Q. Adams, in his first year, 5. 36 Niles, 267. 
1 1 Ann. Reg. 21. 


dinners and meetings, so as to prepare the com- 
munity for a warm political contest until the next 
election." l The public was greatly astonished at 
the uproar among the politicians. The nation ac- 
quiesced in the result of the election as perfectly 
constitutional and regular, and it cost great effort 
to stir up an artificial heat and indignation about 
it. The " bargain " formed the first stock or capi- 
tal of the opposition. The claim that Jackson had 
been cheated out of his election was the second. 
This became an article of the political creed, and 
it was the most efficacious means of stirring up 
party rage, although no one could tell how he was 
cheated. It was a splendid example of the power 
of persistent clamor without facts or reason. Some 
attempt was made to get up a cry about " family 
influence," but this did not take. The charge of 
bargain and fraud was so assiduously reiterated 
that, in 1827, there were six senators and forty 
representatives who would not call on the Presi- 
dent. 2 It was during the session of 1825-26 that 
the discordant elements of the opposition coalesced 
into a party, 3 the democratic party of the next 
twenty years. Near the end of the session a pro- 
minent Virginia politician declared that the com- 
binations for electing Jackson in 1828 were already 
formed. 4 

1 1 Ann. Reg. 38. 

2 7 Adams, 374. The federal members of Congress would not 
visit Madison in 1815. 1 Curtis's Webster, 135. 

8 1 Ann. Eeg. 22. 4 Ibid. 


It was proposed to adopt a constitutional amend- 
ment taking away the contingent power of the 
House to elect a President, but no agreement could 
be reached. A committee on executive patronage 
was raised, in reality to provide electioneering ma- 
terial. This committee reported six bills, the most 
important of which provided that the President 
might not appoint to office any person who had 
been a member of Congress during his own term 
in the presidential office, and that the President, if 
he should remove any officer, should state his 
reasons to the Senate on the appointment of a suc- 
cessor. No action was taken. 

The topic, however, on which the opposition 
most distinctly showed their spirit was the Panama 
mission. Benton misrepresents that affair more 
grossly than any other on which he touches. The 
fact is that the opposition were forced by their 
political programme to oppose a measure which it 
was very awkward for them to oppose, and they 
were compelled to ridicule and misrepresent the 
matter in order to cover their position. Sargent l 
tells a story of an opposition senator, who, when 
rallied on the defeat of the opposition, in the vote 
on confirming the commissioners, replied: "Yes, 
they have beaten us by a few votes after a hard 
battle ; but if they had only taken the other side 
and refused the mission, we should have had 
them ! " The opposition vehemently denounced 
the Monroe doctrine. They would not print the 

1 1 Sargent, 117. 


instructions to the commissioners because these 
would have refuted the exaggerated denunciations. 
^It was not until 1829 that public opinion forced 
the printing. 1 

Adams had strong convictions about points of 
public policy. He held that it was the duty of the 
President to advise and recommend to Congress 
such measures as he thought desirable in the public 
interest, and then to leave to Congress the respon- 
sibility if nothing was done. He therefore set out 
in his messages series of acts and measures which 
he thought should be adopted. He thereby played 
directly into the hands of the opposition, for they 
then had a complete programme before them of 
what they had to attack. Adams held the active 
theory of statesmanship. He was not content to 
let the people alone. He thought that a statesman 
could foresee, plan, prepare, open the way, set in 
action, encourage, and otherwise care for the people. 
To him the doctrine of implied powers meant only 
that the Constitution had created a government 
complete and adequate for all the functions which 
devolved upon it in caring for all the interests 
which were confided to it. He regarded the new 
land as a joint possession of all the States, the sale 
of which would provide funds which ought to be 
used to build roads, bridges, and canals, and to 
carry out other works of internal improvement, 
which, as he thought, would open up the con- 
tinent to civilization. 2 He cared more for internal 

1 They are to be found, 4 Ann. Reg. 29. 2 9 Adams, 162. 


improvements than for a protective tariff. 1 He 
wanted a national university and a naval school. 
He favored expenditures on fortifications and a 
navy and an adequate army. He wanted the 
federal judiciary enlarged and a bankruptcy law 
passed. Some of the opposition found the party 
exigency severe, which forced them to oppose all 
the points in this programme. In 1824 Crawford 
had been the only stickler for State rights and 
strict construction. Calhoun and his friends had 
been on the other side. The old-fashioned pet- 
tifogging of the strict construction ists, and the 
cast-iron dogmatism of the State rights men, were 
developed in the heat of the factious opposition of 
1825-29. All that, however, before that time had 
been considered extreme or " radical." Van Buren, 
on his reelection to the Senate in 1827, wrote a 
letter in which he promised to recover for the 
States the " rights of which they had been de- 
prived by construction," and to save what rights 
remained. 2 Hammond expresses the quiet astonish- 
ment which this created in the minds of the people, 
even democrats like himself, who were not aware 
that the States had suffered any wrong, especially 
at the hands of the existing administration. The 
country was in profound peace and stupid pro- 
sperity, and the rancor of the politicians seemed 
inexplicable. The public debt was being refunded 
advantageously. Immigration was large and grow- 
ing. The completion of the Erie Canal in 1825 

1 8 Adams, 444. 2 2 Hammond, 246. 


opened up the great lakes to navigation^se these 
adjacent country to settlement. Public affaiiations. 
in fact dull. The following passage from ^ced 
" Annual Register" shows the impression made by 
the agitation at Washington : l 

"Nearly all the propositions which were called for 
by the popular voice were defeated, either from want 
of time for their consideration, or by an influence 
which seemed to exert itself for the sole purpose of 
rendering those who administered the government un- 
popular. The community was generally disappointed 
as to the results of the session. . . . Many of the 
members were new to political life. . . . Others were 
predetermined to opposition, and from the first as- 
sembling of Congress devoted themselves to thwarting 
the measures which its [the administration's] friends 
urged upon the consideration of Congress. The Vice- 
President and his friends were most prominent in this 
class of politicians. . . . The manner, too, in which the 
opposition attacked the administration displayed an ex- 
asperated feeling, in which the community did not 
sympathize, and a general suspicion was felt that its 
leaders were actuated by private griefs, and that the 
public interests were neglected in their earnest struggle 
for power. The pride of the country, too, had received 
a deep wound in the prostration of the dignity of the 

Calhoun appointed committees hostile to the 
administration, which could not bring their own 
party to the support of their reports. He also 
ruled that it was not the duty of the Vice-Presi- 

1 1 Ann. Beg. 149. 


improverreserve order, save upon the initiative of 
wanteoenator on the floor. Great disorder oc- 
He^od, and John Randolph especially took advan- 
tage of this license. The Senate was led, at the 
end of the session of 182526, to take from the 
Vice-President the duty of appointing the commit- 
tees of the Senate. Letters which appeared in 
one of the Washington newspapers, signed " Pat- 
rick Henry," criticising Calhoun's course, were 
ascribed to the President. Answering letters, 
signed " Onslow," were ascribed to the Vice-Pre- 
sident. 1 

Adams took no steps to create an administration 
party. He offered the Treasury to Crawford, who 
refused it. He then gave it to Rush, who had 
voted against him. The Secretaries of War and 
of the Navy had likewise supported other candi- 
dates. 2 Adams refused to try to secure the elec- 
tion of Jeremiah Mason, an administration man, to 
the Senate. 3 He had declared, before the election, 
that he should reward no one, and proscribe no 
one. He adhered to this faithfully. Clay urged 
him to avoid pusillanimity on the one hand, and 
persecution on the other. 4 The election being 
over, Clay said that no officer ought to be allowed 
" to hold a conduct in open and continual dispar- 
agement of the administration and its head." 
Adams replied that, in the particular case under 
discussion (collector at New Orleans), there had 

1 Harper's Calhoun, 31. 2 Perkins, 289. 

3 7 Adams, 14. * 6 Adams, 546. 


been no overt act ; that four fifths of all the cus- 
tom-house officers had been unfavorable to his 
(Adams's) election, and were now in his power ; 
that he had been urged to sweep them all away ; 
that he could not do this as to one without opening 
the question as to all, and that he would enter on 
no such policy. In 1826 Clay urged Adams to 
remove the custom-house officers at Charleston and 
Philadelphia. Adams refused, although he thought 
that these officers were using the subordinate offices 
an their control against the administration. 1 He 
appointed federalists when he thought that they 
were better qualified than other candidates. This 
did not conciliate the federalists, and it aroused 
all " the wormwood and the gall " of the old party 
hatred. 2 In 1827 Clay and others urged him to 
confine appointments to friends. He refused to 
adopt that rule. 3 He expressed the belief that the 
opposition were spending money to poison public 
opinion through the press, but he would not do 
anything for Biiins, an administration editor. 4 In 
June, 1827, he refused to go to Philadelphia, to 
make a speech in German to the farmers, at the 
opening of the canal, because he objected to that 
style of electioneering. 5 In October, 1827, Clay 
made a warm protest against Adams's action in re- 
taining McLean, the Postmaster-General. Clay 
alleged that McLean was using the post-office 
patronage actively against the administration, 

1 7 Adams, 163. 2 7 Adams, 207. 8 7 Adams, 257. 

4 7 Adams, 262. 5 7 Adams, 297. 


McLean hated Clay and loved Calhoun, 1 but he 
claimed to be a loyal friend of the administration. 
Adams would not believe him a traitor. 2 A cam- 
paign story was started that Adams's accounts 
with the Treasury were not in order. Clay de- 
sired that Adams would correspond with an elec- 
tion committee in Kentucky, and refute the 
charge. Adams refused, because he disapproved 
of the western style of electioneering and stump- 
speaking. 3 Binns, an Irish refugee, editor of the 
" Democratic Press " of Philadelphia, ought by all 
affinities to have been a supporter of Jackson, but 
he took the wrong turning after Crawford's disap- 
pearance, and became a supporter of Adams. He 
plaintively describes the results. He tried to talk 
to Adams about appointments. " I was promptly 
told that Mr. President Adams did not intend to 
make any removals. I bowed respectfully, assur- 
ing the President that I had no doubt the conse- 
quence would be that he would himself be removed 
so soon as the term for which he had been elected 
had expired. This intimation gave the President 
no concern, and assuredly did in no wise affect his 
previous determination." 4 Binns, however, was 
wise in his generation. 

Adams's administration had a majority in the 
Senate until the 20th Congress met in 1827, when 
both Houses had opposition majorities. Adams 
says that this was the first time in the history of 

1 7 Adams, 364 2 7 Adams, 343. 

8 7 Adams. 347. * Binns, 250. 


the country that such had been the case. 1 The 
session of 1827-28 was almost entirely occupied in 
manufacturing political capital. A committee on 
retrenchment and reform presented a majority and 
a minority report. The majority expressed alarm 
at the increasing expenditures of the federal gov- 
ernment, and the extravagance of the administra- 
tion. The minority said that no expenditures had 
been made which Congress had not ordered, and 
that the expenditures had not increased unduly, 
when the size and population of the country were 
considered. It was charged that large sums had 
been spent in decorating the President's house, 
especially the "East Room." Congress had ap- 
propriated 825,000 for the White House, of which 
$6,000 had been spent. The rest was returned to 
the Treasury. As soon as Jackson was elected, 
the " Courier and Enquirer " said that the " East 
Room " was very shabby, and would at once be 
made decent. 2 There was no attempt to be fair or 
truthful in these charges. They were made solely 
with a view to effect. Clamor and reiteration 
availed to spread an opinion that the administra- 
tion had been extravagant. 

TJhe campaign of 1828 was conducted, on both 
sides, on very ruthless methods. Niles said that 
it was worse than the campaign of 1798. 3 jCarn- 
paign extras of the " Telegraph " were issued 
weekly, containing partisan material, refutations 
of charges against Jackson, and slanders on Ad- 

1 7 Adams, 367. 2 Quoted 37 Niles, 229. 3 35 Niles, 33. 


ams ftnd Clav. The Adams party also published 
a monthly of a similar character : " Truth's Advo- 
cate and Monthly Anti-Jackson Expositor." The 
country was deluged with pamphlets on both sides. 
These pamphlets were very poor stuff, and contain 
nothing important on any of the issues, and no 
contribution to history. They all appeal to low 
tastes and motives, prejudices and jealousies. 
Binns issued a number of hand-bills, each with a 
coffin at the head, known as "coffin hand-bills," 
setting forth Jackson's bloody and lawless deeds. 1 
One Jackson hand-bill had a broad-axe cut of 
John Quincy Adams driving off with a horsewhip 
a crippled old soldier who dared to speak to him 
and ask an alms. In short, campaign literature 
took on a new and special development in this 
campaign, and one is driven to wonder whether 
the American people of that day were such that 
all this drivel and vulgarity could affect their 

Against Jackson was brought up his marriage, 
and all the facts of his career which could be made 
the subject of unfavorable comment. Against 
Adams were brought charges that he gave to Web- 
ster and the federalists, in 1824, a corrupt pro- 
mise ; that he was a monarchist and aristocrat ; 
that he refused to pay a subscription to turnpike 
stock on a legal quibble ; that his wife was an 
Englishwoman; that he wrote a scurrilous poem 

1 Binns says that he issued these hand-bills and was mobbed 
in 1824. It seems that his memory failed him. 


against Jefferson in 1802 ; that he surrendered a 
young American servant-woman to the Emperor of 
Russia; that he was rich; that he was in debt; 
that he had long enjoyed public office; that he 
had received immense amounts of public money, 
namely, the aggregate of all the salaries, outfits, 
and allowances which he had ever received ; that 
his accounts with the Treasury were not in order ; 
that he had charged for constructive journeys ; that 
he had put a billiard-table in the White House at 
the public expense ; l that he patronized duellists 
(Clay) ; that he had had a quarrel with his father, 
who had disinherited him ; that he had sent out 
men in the pay of the government to electioneer 
for him ; that he had corrupted the civil service ; 
that he had used the federal patronage to influence 
elections. The federalists, in their turn, charged 
him with not having kept his promise to Webster. 
McLean's conduct towards the end of Adams's 
term caused more and more complaint. He had 
been a Methodist minister, and some administration 
men did not want him dismissed lest the Metho- 
dists should be offended. 2 Bache, the postmaster 
at Philadelphia, was a defaulter. McLean had 
known it for eighteen months. Finally he removed 
Bache, and appointed Thomas Sergeant, who had 
been allied with Ingham, Dallas, and other Jackson 
men. Adams would not remove McLean. 3 

1 Levi Woodbury was especially shocked at this. Plumer's 
Plumer, 513. 

2 7 Adams, 540. 8 8 Adams, 8, 25, 51. 

THE VOTE IN 1828 147 

In October, just before the election, but too 
short a time before it to have any effect on it, 
Adams became involved in a controversy with 
William B. Giles about the circumstances and 
motives of his (Adams's) going over to the ad- 
ministration in 1807. On account of revelations 
which were made in this controversy, Adams was 
involved in another with the descendants of the 
old high federalists, who called him to account for 
allegations that the federalists of 1803-1809 were 
secessionists. The controversy developed all the 
acrimony of the old quarrel between the Adamses 
and the high federalists. John Quincy Adams 
prepared a full statement of the facts on which he 
based his opinions and statements, but it was not 
published until 1877. 1 

Lewis wrote to Hayward of Cincinnati, March 
28, 1827, urging that the Clinton men should take 
sides, as the Calhoun men had done, which " will 
give, them equally as strong claims on the friends 
of Gen. Jackson, but unless they do this they have 
no right to expect the support of his friends, unless 
it be from motives of Patriotism alone." " Their 
silence heretofore has subjected them to the im- 
putation of a want of candor. They ought to know 
that if the schemes of Adams, Clay and Webster 
are carried into effect; that he [Clinton] never 
can be President. If Old Hickory shall be elected 
he will set a better example it is not my opinion 

1 New England Federalism, by Henry Adams. See also Plu- 
taer's Plumer, and Lodge's Cabot. 


he could be Induced to serve more than one term." 1 
In September, the Tammany General Committee 
and the Albany " Argus " came out for Jackson, 2 
as it had beep determined, in the programme, that 
they should" do. A law was passed for casting 
the vote of New York in 1828 by districts. The 
days of voting throughout the country ranged 
from October 31st to November 19th. 3 The votes 
were cast by ifre Legislature in Delaware and 
South Carolina ; by districts in Maine, New York, 
Maryland, Tennessee ; elsewhere, by general ticket. 
Jackson got 178 votes to 83 for Adams. The 
popular vote was 648,2t3 for Jackson ; 508,064 
for Adams. 4 Jackson got only one vote in New 
England, namely, in a district of Maine, where the 
vote was, Jackson, 4,223 ; Adams, 4,028. 5 New 
York gave Jackson 20 ; Adams, 16. New Jersey 
and Delaware voted for Adams. Maryland gave 
him 6, and Jackson 5. Adams got not a single 
vote south of the Potomac or west of the Alle- 
ghanies. In Georgia no Adams ticket was nomi- 
nated. 6 Tennessee gave Jackson 44,293 votes, and 
Adams 2,240. Parton has a story of an attempt, 
in a Tennessee village, to tar and feather two men 
who dared to vote for Adams. 7 Pennsylvania gave 
Jackson 101,652 votes ; Adams, 50,848. For Vice- 

1 Copy in Ford MSS. 2 2 Hammond, 258. 

3 Telegraph Extra, 565. 

4 3 Ann. Reg. 31. The figures for the popular vote vary in 
different authorities. 

8 35 Niles, 177. 6 See page 228. 7 3 Parton, 151. 

THE VOTE IN 1828 149 

President, Richard Rush got all the Adams votes ; 
Calhoun got all the Jackson votes except f 7 of 
Georgia, which, were given to William Smith, of 
South Carolina. 

General Jackson was T Jheref ore 'triumphantly 
elected President of the United States, in the name 
oTTeform, and as the standard-bearer of the people, 
rising in their might to overthrow an extrava- 
gant, corrupt, aristocratic, federalist administration, 
which had encroached on the liberties of the people, 
and had aimed to .corrupt elections by an- abuse 
of ^federal patronage. Many people believed this 
picture of Adams's administration to be true. An- 
drew Jackson no doubt believed it. Many people 
believe it yet. Perhaps no administration, except 
that of the elder Adams, is under such odium. 
There is not, however, in our history any adminis- 
tration which, upon a severe and impartial scrutiny, 
appears more worthy of respectful and honorable 
memory. 1 Its chief fault was that it was too good 
for the wicked world in which it found itself. In 
1836 Adams said, in the House, that he had never 
removed one person from office for political causes, 
and that he thought that was one of the principal 
reasons why he was not reflected. 2 The "Annual 
Register " 3 aptly quoted, in regard to Adams, a 
remark of Burke on Lord Chatham : " For a wise 
man he seemed to me, at that time, to be governed 
too much by general maxims. In consequence of 

1 See Morse's J. Q. Adams. 2 50 Niles, 194. 

8 3 Ann. Beg. 34. 


having put so much the larger part of his opposers 
into power, his own principles could not have any 
effect or influence in the conduct of affairs. When 
he had executed his plan he had not an inch of 
ground to stand upon. When he had accomplished 
his scheme of administration, he was no longer a 


BEFORE entering upon the history of Jackson's 
administration it is necessary to notice a piece of 
local history, to which frequent subsequent refer- 
ence must be made, on account of influences ex- 
erted on national politics. A great abuse of paper 
money and banking took place in the Mississippi 
Valley between 1818 and 1828. It was an out- 
come of the application of political forces to the 
relations of debtor and creditor. It necessarily fol- 
lowed that political measures were brought into 
collision with constitutional provisions, and with 
judicial institutions as the interpreters and admin- 
istrators of the same, in such points as the public 
credit, the security of contracts, the sanctity of 
vested rights, the independence of the judiciary, 
and its, power to pass on the constitutionality of 
laws. (A struggle also arose between squatterism 
and law in respect to land titles, which involved 
the same fundamental interests and issues of civil 
liberty and civilization. Currency, banks, land 
titles, stay laws, judge-breaking, disunion, and the 
authority of the federal judiciary, were the matters 
at stake, and all were combined and reacting on 


each othery Kentucky was the scene of the strong- 
est and longest conflict between the constitutional 
guarantees of vested rights and the legislative mea- 
sures for relieving persons from contract obliga- 
tions, when the hopes under which those obligations 
were undertaken had been disappointed by actual 
experience. It was from Kentucky, also, that the 
influences arose which were brought to bear on 
national politics. 

(jt is worth while to see what historical antece- 
dents had educated the people of Kentucky up to 
the extravagant opinions and conduct of 1820-30) 

(The sources of the trouble "lie far back in the 
colonial history of Virginia and North Carolina, 
where false and evil traditions were started which, 
when carried to Kentucky and Tennessee, produced 
more gross and extravagant consequences. There 
had been excessive speculation in all the colonies, 
and all had imitated more or less the action of 
Massachusetts, in 1640, when a crisis produced ruin 
to indebted speculators, and when it was ordered 
that goods taken on execution should be transferred 
to the creditor at a valuation put on them by three 
neighbors as appraisers. 1 There was some justifi- 
cation for such a law when there was no market, so 
that goods offered at auction were harshly sacri- 
ficed. Appraisement laws, however, in a commu- 
nity where all were indebted, and where each in 
turn became appraiser for his neighbors, were a 
gross abuse of the forms of law. 

1 Felt, 23. 


A case of judge-breaking, in connection with a 
disputed land-title (due to the slovenly land system 
of Virginia), occurred, in Kentucky, in 1795. 1 An 
attempt had been made, by the State, to quiet 
titles, and to give security to landholders, by ap- 
pointing commissioners, who gave certificates to 
possessors. Very many of the latter were squat- 
ters, and paper titles were extant which underlay 
their claims. The Court of Appeals of the State 
would not allow the certificates to preclude an exam- 
ination of a claim and an award of justice, as the 
law and the facts might require. In this it aroused 
the rage of the squatter element. Two judges, 
Muter and Sebastian, made the decision ; Wallace 
dissenting. At the next session of the Legislature 
an attempt was made to remove the two judges 
by an address to the Governor, but there were 
only three majority for it in the House, while two 
thirds were required. The House then summoned 
the two judges before it, but they refused to 
appear on grounds of the independence of the judi- 
ciary. The House passed resolutions denouncing 
the judgment and impugning the integrity or men- 
tal capacity of the judges. The Senate, by a ma- 
jority of one, passed similar resolutions. At the 
next term, Muter joined Wallace in reversing the 
decision and ordering a new trial. There was a 
new appeal and affirmation of the second decision. 3 

A system of selling State lands on credit began 

1 McConnell vs. Kenton, Hughes's Ky. Rep. 257. 

2 Butler, 252. 


in 1797, which had a very unfortunate effect in cre- 
ating a body of debtors to the State. For fifteen 
years law upon law was passed, fluctuating between 
the motive of collecting what was due to the State, 
and that of showing leniency to the debtor. Innu- 
merable acts of grace to individuals were passed. 

It was another peculiarity of Kentucky legisla- 
tion that the judiciary system of the State was 
changed again and again, and also that numerous 
acts were passed in relief of negligent and delin- 
quent officers. 

Judge Muter experienced in his own person the 
hardship of life in a community which does not 
respect vested rights. He was retired, in 1806, on 
an old age pension of $300, but pensions were un- 
popular, and his was repealed in 1809, in spite of 
the Governor's veto. 

Another incident which contributes to the same 
manifestation of the popular temper was a law of 
1808, that " all reports " of decisions in England 
since July 4, 1776, "shall not be read nor con- 
sidered as authority in any of the courts of this 
commonwealth." The lawyers held that no one 
could violate this except by reading all the re- 
ports, etc. ; but the decisions, although cited, were 
not read in court. 1 This State also tried the pop- 
ular whim of lay judges.^ 

During the period of inflation east of the 
Alleghanies (1812-15), 2 the States west of the 
Alleghanies had plenty of silver, and were free from 
1 Littell's Rep. Pref. 2 See page 268. 


financial disturbance. At the session of 1817-18, 
the Legislature of Kentucky plunged that State 
into the inflation system by chartering forty banks, 
which were to issue notes redeemable in Bank of 
Kentucky notes. 1 The popular party was now un- 
der the dominion of a mania for banks, as the 
institutions for making the poor rich. Clamorous 
demands were, at the same time, made for a share 
in the blessings which the Bank of the United 
States was to shower over the country, and two 
branches were established, one at Lexington and 
one at Louisville. Prices immediately began to 
rise ; specie was exported ; contracts were entered 
into, in the expectation of a constant advance of 
the " wave of prosperity." All hastened to get into 
debt, because to do so was not only the^way to get 
rich, but the only way to save one's self from ruin. 
In June, 1819, it is reported : " The whole State is 
in considerable commotion. The gross amount of 
debts due the banks is estimated at ten millions 
of dollars. . . . Several county meetings have been 
held. Their purpose is : (1) a suspension of specie 
payments ; (2) more paper money ; (3) an extra 
session of the Legislature to pass some laws on 
this emergency. What did we tell the people of 
Kentucky when they littered their banks ? " 2 
In 1819 the banks of Tennessee and Kentucky 

1 The Bank of Kentucky was founded in 1806, with capital 
$1,000,000, half contributed by the State; to begin business 
when $20,000 were subscribed. Sumner ; Hist, of Banking in the 
U. 8., 59. 

2 16 Niles, 261. 


and nearly all in Ohio suspended specie payments. 1 
The bubble had now exploded. Liquidation was 
inevitable, and the indebted speculators were 
ruined. Then came the outcry for relief, that is, 
for some legislative measures which would, as they 
thought, make the bubble mount again long enough 
for them to escape, or suspend the remedies of 
creditors so that liquidation might be avoided. 
The local banks generally ascribed their ruin to 
the Bank of the United States. They over-issued 
their notes, which accumulated in the branch of 
the Bank, that being the strongest holder. These 
notes were presented for redemption. The local 
banks construed that as " oppression," and eagerly 
warded off all responsibility from themselves by 
representing themselves as the victims of an alien 
monster, which crushed them while they were try- 
ing to confer blessings on the people about them. 
The big Bank was bad enough, but the plea of the 
local banks was ingeniously false. It availed, how- 
ever, to turn the popular indignation altogether 
against the Bank of the United States. 

July 26, 1820, the Bank of Tennessee was estab- 
lished, to last until 1843, with a branch at Knox- 
ville. Its amount of issue was $ 1,000,000. Its notes 
were to be loaned on mortgage security under an 
apportionment between the counties, according to 
the taxable property in 181 9. 2 There was already 

1 On the history of the banks of the whole Mississippi Vallej 
at this time see Sumner ; Hist. Banking in U. S. 

2 18 Niles, 452 ; Gouge, 39. 


a Bank of Tennessee, which would have nothing 
to do with the new " bank." The Legislature of 
Tennessee also passed a law that both real and 
personal property, sold under execution, should be 
redeemable within two years by paying the pur- 
chaser ten per cent advance. Jackson was a pro- 
minent and energetic opponent of the relief system. 1 
While the bill for the above bank was pending he 
wrote to Lewis as follows : 

" Have you seen the Bill now before the Legislature 
of our state to establish a loan office If you have, 
permit me to ask, have you ever seen as wicked & 
pernicious a thing attempted by a set of honest Legisla- 
tures acting under the santity of an oath and such a 
palbable infringement of both the federal & state con- 
stitutions If you have I would thank you to tell me 
when and where. I did not believe that corruption & 
wickedness had obtained such an ascendancy in the mind 
of any man, to originate such a bill and still much less, 
that a majority of the Legislature would be imposed 
upon by false colouring & false reasoning to pass such a 
Bill but I have been mistaken, it has passed to a third 
reading & will pass into a law unless stopped in its 
Carreer by the voice of the people I learn to day 
that a meeting will be in the lower end of Sumner & 
one in the lower end of Wilson & one at M r Sanders 
store in Davidson this day to remonstrate against it 
the people are unanimous I am told on this subject 
They find it a desperate & wicked .project in its details 
& one which strikes at the vital principles of the charter 
of their liberties, and their dearest rights & are all alive 

* Sumner ; Hist. Banking, 148. 


upon the subject, and I expect will be unanimous in 
their remonstrance against it, as no good can grow out 
of it & much evil I do hope that the good people of 
Nashvill will unite in their hearty remonstrance against 
it, & that they will be aided by the grand Jury early 
next week : if early in the week ; it will stop the evil of 
the passage of the law, or be a sure pledge that it will 
be repealed next session. 

" I hope you and M r Derby will not sit silent & let 
such a wicked profligate & unconstitutional law pass 
without your exertions to prevent it a law that will 
disgrace the state, destroy all credit abroad, and all 
confidence at home I will endeavour to send you on 
Sunday a copy of the resolutions [illegible] tomorrow 
I trust they will be such that you & all honest men will 
approve answer this by the bearer." l 

This letter was indorsed on the back by Lewis : 
" Mr. Grundy was the originator of the wicked 
and corrupt measure referred to by the General in 
this letter." This accounts to some extent for Jack- 
son's active opposition to the measure. 

Lewis reminded Jackson, in 1839, tbat they had 
always differed on "financial matters,"" and re- 
ferred to the following letter, written in answer to 
the one just quoted, in proof : 

" I have both seen, and read with attention, the law, 
or Bill, now before the Legislature, authorising the 
establishment of a Loan Office ; and altho I think it a 
dangerous experiment, and that by passing it we will be 
hazarding much, yet I hope and am inclined to think, it 
will not be fraught with such consequences as your lively 

i Ford MSS. 


interest for the prosperity of the State, have induced 
you to believe. . . . The members of the Legislature, I 
am told, and particularly some of your warmest friends, 
think your remarks about them, when in Murfresborough, 
were very harsh. Members of Assembly, acting under 
the sanctity of an oath do not like to be told that by 
voting for certain measures they have been guilty of 
perjury. Such harshness, my dear General, is calculated 
to do yourself an injury without producing the desired 
good. Mildness universally has a much more salutary 
effect; it often convinces the understanding without 
wounding the feelings. Your enemies will, and are al- 
ready giving a high colouring to the observations you 
made in Murfresboro'. the other day." 

Fifteen months later Jackson wrote from Florida: 
"I regret the scenes that you relate, you may rest 
assured it has greatly injured the reputation of the 
State, and I have no doubt will have a tendency to open 
the eyes of the sober virtuous part of the community, to 
the proflegate conduct of a party in Tennessee whose 
conduct has destroyed its character and its best interests, 
your paper here is not worth -j 5 ^ to the dollar and this 
depreciation falls upon the labourers There is no 
county that can stand this long and I expect if the 
assembly can be swayed by M r Grandy the governor, & 
party, that we will have a few more million of raggs - 
as I do not mean to have much to do with this ragg 
business, I console myself with the prayer "May the 
lords will be done." " 

In June, 1821, the Court of Appeals of Ten- 
nessee pronounced the relief system of that State 
unconstitutional, and it came to an end. 


The forty banks and the two branches of the 
Bank of the United States, in Kentucky, went 
into operation in 1817. The Bank of Kentucky 
could not therefore sustain its former circulation. 
It imported $240,000 in silver, and reduced its 
circulation, November, 1818, to $195,000. Never- 
theless, it fell heavily in debt during 1818 and 
1819 to the branches of the Bank of the United 
States. 1 In November, 1819, the latter bank or- 
dered the debt to be collected. The Bank of 
Kentucky suspended and compromised. Its notes 
were at fifteen per cent discount. A great reduc- 
tion of the paper was forced, because the Bank of 
the United States came in to demand payment. 
May 4, 1820, the stockholders of the Bank of 
Kentucky voted to suspend specie payments. This 
suspension became permanent. Intense rage was 
excited against the Bank of the United States. 
Kentucky had laid a tax of $60,000 on each of 
the branches of the national Bank, in January, 
1819. At the same time the Supreme Court of 
the United States declared the Bank constitu- 
tional. 2 In December the Kentucky Court of Ap- 
peals unanimously sustained the State tax, on the 
ground that the Bank was unconstitutional. Two 
judges thought that they must yield to the Su- 
preme Court of the United States. The third, 
Rowan, thought that they ought to stand out and 
force further trial in the interest of State rights. 3 

1 Kendall's Autobiography, 203. 2 See page 166. 

8 Kendall's Autobiography, 205. 


December 15, 1819, the Legislature of Kentucky 
passed, over a veto, a law 1 to suspend for sixty 
days sales under executions, if the defendant gave 
bonds that the goods levied on should be forth- 
coming at the end of that time. The Bank of 
the Commonwealth of Kentucky was established 
November 29, 1820, as a further " relief " measure 
for the benefit of the debtors, victims of the forty 
banks of 1817. As a further measure of relief a 
' replevin law was passed, December 25, 1820, ac- 
cording to which the debtor was to have two years 
in which to redeem, under an execution, unless the 
creditor should endorse on the note that he would 
take notes of the Bank of the Commonwealth, if 
the debtor could pay them. Another act was 
passed, December 21, 1821, which forbade the sale 
of land on execution, unless it should bring three 
fourths of its value as appraised by a jury of neigh- 
bors. The Bank of the Commonwealth was au- 
thorized to issue notes for three millions of dollars. 
It had no stockholders. The president and direc- 
tors were elected annually by the Legislature. 
Their salaries were paid by the State. They were 
incorporated. The notes were issued in loans on 
mortgage security, and were apportioned between 
the counties in proportion to the taxable property 
in each in 1820. Loans were to be made, in 1820, 
only to those who needed them, " for the purpose 
of paying his, her, or their just debts," or to pur- 
chase the products of the country for exportation. 

1 Kendall's Autobiography, 227. 


The bank had twelve branches. Its funds were to 
be : (1) all money thereafter paid in for land war- 
rants, or for land west of the Tennessee river ; (2) 
the produce of the stock owned by the State in 
the Bank of Kentucky, after that bank should be 
wound up; (3) the unexpended balances in the 
treasury at the end of the year. The profits of 
the bank were to go to the State. Stripped of all 
pretence, therefore, the bank was the State trea- 
sury, put into the hands of a commission elected 
by the Legislature, and incorporated. Its funds 
were the current receipts of the treasury from land, 
and its current balance, if it had one ; also the 
capital already invested in the old bank, whenever 
that should be released, which never was done. 
The notes of the bank were legal tender to and 
from the State. The Legislature appropriated 
$7,000 to buy books, paper, and plates for printing 
the notes. This is all the real capital the bank 
ever had. It was, therefore, just one of the grand 
swindling concerns common at that period, so many 
of which are described in the pages of Niles and 
Gouge. 1 

In 1822 Judge Clark, of the Circuit Court of 
Kentucky, declared the replevin law of that State 
unconstitutional. 2 He was cited before the House 
jf Representatives of the State, and an effort was 

1 46 Niles, 211. 

2 23 Niles, Supp. 153 (supplement to the 22d vol.). The judge's 
decision, the legislative proceedings, and the judge's defence are 
there given. 


made to have him removed by the Governor on 
the resolution of the Legislature. The vote was 
59 to 35 ; not two thirds, as required by the Con- 
stitution for this method of removal. In this year 
the Legislature used its power in the election of 
directors of the old Bank of Kentucky to put in 
" relief " men who would make that bank accept 
Commonwealth notes. The effect was that the 
stock of the old bank at once fell to fifty, and it 
suspended. 1 In October, 1822, a specie dollar was 
worth $2.05 in Commonwealth notes. 2 A Ken- 
tucky correspondent writes, February, 1823 : The 
Bank of the Commonwealth " has nearly destroyed 
all commerce or trade, extinguished personal credit, 
and broken down confidence between man and man, 
as well as damped and depressed the industry 
of the State ; but the people are beginning to 
get tired of its blessings, and its paper-mill will 
soon cease working, leaving a debt, however, 
due to it from the poorest of the people to the 
amount of two and a half or three millions of dol- 
lars." 3 

In 1823 the notes of the Bank of the Common- 
wealth began to be withdrawn and burned. Gov- 
ernor Adair, in his message of that year, approved 
of the relief system, and denounced the courts for 
deciding the replevin laws unconstitutional. This 
proceeding of the courts seems to have been then 

1 Collins, 89. 2 23 Niles, 96. 

8 23 Niles, 337. Kendall justly described the relief system in 
1821. Autobiography, 246. 


regarded very generally by the people of Kentucky 
as a usurpation by the judges, and an assault on 
the liberties of the people. After Adair's term 
expired, he petitioned for redress, on account of 
the payment of his salary in depreciated paper. 

In 1823 the Court of Appeals of Kentucky de- 
clared the relief laws unconstitutional. The Leg- 
islature, in January, 1824, affirmed the constitu- 
tionality of said laws, and an issue was made up 
on the right and power of courts to annul, on the 
ground of unconstitutionality, laws passed by the 
representatives of the people. The relief system 
thus brought directly to the test the power of a sys- 
tem of constitutional guarantees, administered by an 
independent judiciary, to protect rights against an 
interested and corrupt majority of debtors, which 
was using its power, under democratic-republican 
self-government, to rob the minority of creditors. 
The State election of 1824 was fought on the effort 
to elect a Legislature, two thirds of which would 
memorialize the Governor for the removal of the 
judges who had decided the relief laws unconstitu- 
tional. A majority was obtained, but. not two 
thirds. Another course was then taken. The 
legislative act by which the State judiciary was 
organized and the Court of Appeals created was 
repealed. Keference was made, in defence of this 
action, to the repeal of the federal judiciary act, at 
the beginning of Jefferson's administration. 1 A 
new Court of Appeals was constituted by a new 

i Collins, 90. 


act. William T. Barry was appointed chief jus- 
tice. The old court denied the constitutionality of 
the repeal and of the new court, and continued its 
existence, so that there were two courts. In 1825 
the parties in the State were "Old Court" and 
" New Court." 1 The new court party affirmed, 
sometimes with vehemence, sometimes with so- 
lemnity, that liberty and republicanism were at 
stake, and that the contest was to see whether the 
judges should be above the law. The old court 
party won a majority in the lower House. The 
Senate, which held over, was still of the new 
court party. The House voted to abolish the 
new court, but the Senate did not agree. By this 
time the contest had developed a whole school of 
ambitious, rising politicians, who appealed with 
demagogical address to the passions and distress 
of the embarrassed debtors. In November, 1825, 
Niles quotes a Kentucky paper that more persons 
had left that State than had come to it for many 
years. It is plain that two classes of persons were 
driven away by the relief system : (1) those who 
wanted, by steady industry and accumulation with- 
out borrowing, to acquire capital and to be secure 
in the possession of it : and (2) those who could 
not, under the prevailing depression, work off the 
mortgages which they had* eagerly given to the 
Bank of the Commonwealth for its notes, in the 
hope of thus escaping from old embarrassments. 
After five years their condition was hopeless, and 
1 28 Niles, 277. 


if they had any energy they started westward to 
begin again. 

In the mean time there had been a number of 
decisions by the Supreme Court of the United 
States which irritated the people of Kentucky, and 
enhanced their alarm about the assaults of the 
judiciary on liberty. We have seen how the local 
banks used the Bank of the United States as a 
scapegoat for all their sins, and for all the bad 
legislation of the States. The next swing of the 
pendulum of popular feeling was over into hatred 
of the Bank of the United States. Several States, 
of which Kentucky was one, tried to tax the 
branches out of existence. In McCulloch vs. 
Maryland (1819), 1 and in Osborn vs. Bank of the 
United States (1824), 2 the Supreme Court of the 
United States declared that the States could not 
tax the Bank. In Sturges vs. Crowninshield 
(1819), 3 the same court set limits to the State in- 
solvent laws, and thereby prevented the favor to 
debtors, which the embarrassed States desired to 
provide. R. M. Johnson, of Kentucky, proposed 
an amendment to the Constitution, January 14, 
1822, giving appellate jurisdiction to the Senate in 
any case to which a State was a party, arising 
under the laws, treaties, etc., of the United States. 4 
In Bank of the United States vs. Halstead (1825), 5 
the Supreme Court decided that it had jurisdiction 

1 4 Wheaton, 316. 2 9 Wheaton, 739. 

8 4 Wheaton, 122. * 7 Benton's Abridgment, 145. 

* 10 Wheaton, 51. 


in suits to which the Bank of the United States 
was a party, and that a law which forbade sales of 
land under execution for less than three fourths of 
the appraised value did not apply to writs of exe- 
cution issued by federal courts. The question of 
the constitutionality of such a law was avoided. 
In vVayman vs. Southard (1825), 1 the Supreme 
Court of the United States decided that the re- 
plevin and endorsement law of Kentucky did not 
apply to a writ of execution issued from a federal 
court. In Bank of the United States vs. Plant- 
ers' Bank of Georgia (1824), 2 it decided that if 
a State became a party to a banking or com- 
mercial enterprise the State could be sued in the 
course of the business. This decision seemed to 
threaten the Bank of the Commonwealth of Ken- 
tucky. In Green vs. Biddle (1823) , 3 the Supreme 
Court of the United States decided that the laws 
of Kentucky of 1797 and 1812, which reduced 
the liability of the occupying claimant of land to 
the successful contestant, on account of rent and 
profits, as compared with the same liability under 
the law of Virginia at the time of the separation, 
and which in a corresponding manner increased 
the claims of the occupying claimant for improve- 
ments, were null and void, being in violation of the 
contract between Kentucky and Virginia at the 
time of separation. 4 In Bodley vs. Gaither (1825), 

1 10 Wheaton, 1. 2 9 Wheaton, 904. 3 8 Wheaton, 1. 
4 Kentucky sent to Congress, May 3, 1824, a remonstrance 
against this decision. Letcher, of Kentucky, introduced a reso- 


the Supreme Court of Kentucky refused to be 
controlled by the decision in Greene vs. Biddle. 1 
Inasmuch as the Supreme Court of the United 
States, in Hawkins vs. Barney's Lessee (1831), 2 
very materially modified the ruling in Greene vs. 
Biddle, the Kentucky States rights men could 
claim, as they did, that the federal court had 
" backed down," and that they were right all 
the time. 3 In Dartmouth College vs. Woodward 
(1819), 4 the Supreme Court had decided that the 
charter of a private corporation was a contract 
which a State Legislature must not violate, and 
had thus put certain vested rights beyond legisla- 
tive caprice. 5 

Other decisions had also been made, bearing on 
State rights and the powers of the federal judiciary 
in a more general way. In Martin vs. Hunter's 
Lessee (1816), 6 the constitutionality of the 25th 
section of the judiciary act (power of the Supreme 
Court to pass upon the constitutionality of State 
laws) was affirmed, and the authority of the court 
in a ease under a federal treaty was maintained 
against the Court of Appeals of Virginia. In Gib- 
bons vs. Ogden (1824), 7 the court overruled the 
Supreme Court of New York, and declared an act 

lution to amend the law, so that more than a majority of judges 
should be necessary to declare a State law void. 8 Benton's 
Abridgment, 51. 

1 3 T. B. Monroe, 58. 2 5 Peters, 457. 

8 Butler, 279. 4 4 Wheaton, 518. 

5 1 Webster's Correspondence, 283. 6 1 Wheaton, 304. 

7 9 Wheaton, 1. 


of the Legislature giving exclusive privileges in 
the waters of New York unconstitutional and void. 
In Cohens vs. Virginia (1821), 1 it was decided 
if a citizen of a State pleads against a statute 
of his own State an act of Congress as defence, 
the 25th section of the judiciary act gives the fed- 
eral Supreme Court jurisdiction to test whether 
that defence be good. In the case of the " Mar- 
mion " (1823), the Attorney-General of the United 
States (Wirt) had rendered an opinion 2 (1824) 
that a law of South Carolina (1822), according to 
which any free negro sailors who should come into 
that State on board a ship should be imprisoned 
until the ship sailed again, was incompatible with 
the Constitution and with the international obliga- 
tions of the United States. The District Court of 
the United States had decided (1823) to the same 
effect. 3 

From our present standpoint of established doc- 
trine on the points of constitutional law above 
enumerated, it is difficult to understand the shocks 
which many or all of these decisions gave to the 
Jeffersonian school of politicians. The assertion 
that the reserved rights of the States had been in- 
vaded 4 is to be referred to these judicial decisions, 
not to executive acts. The strict construction, State 
rights school felt every one of these decisions as a 
blow from an adversary against whom there was no 

1 6 Wheaton, 264. 

2 1 Opinions of the Attorneys-General, 659. 

8 25 Niles, 12. 4 See page 139. 


striking back, and the fact undoubtedly is that the 
Supreme Court, under the lead of Marshall and 
Story, was consolidating the federal system, and 
securing it against fanciful dogmas and exagger- 
ated theories which would have made the federal 
government as ridiculous as the German Bund. 
Readers of to-day are surprised to find that a great 
many .people were alarmed about their liberties 
under the mild and timid rule of Monroe. 1 It 
was, however, by no means the scholastic hair- 
splitters and hobby-riders in constitutional law 
alone who were astonished and bewildered by the 
course of the decisions. It needs to be remem- 
bered that the system of the Constitution, even 
after the second war, was yet, to a great degree, un- 
established and unformed. Actual experience of 
any legislative act or constitutional provision is 
needed to find out how it will work, and what inter- 
pretation its terms will take on from the growth of 
institutions and from their inter-action. It is im- 
possible, upon reading a constitutional provision, 
to figure to one's self, save in the vaguest way, 
what will be the character and working of the in- 
stitution which it creates. It was one of the most 
fortunate circumstances in the history of the United 
States that the judicial interpretation and admin- 
istration of the Constitution was, during its for< 
mative period, for a long time in the hands of 
men who shaped the Constitution in fidelity to its 

1 See Garland's Bandolph, especially II. 211, on Gibbons vs 


original meaning and spirit, to secure at once 
dignity and strength to the federal system, and 
constitutional liberty to the nation. It is fortu- 
nate that they were men of profound legal attain- 
ments and historic sense, and neither abstractionists 
of the French school, nor dialecticians under the 
State rights and strict-construction dogmas. The 
history of the country has proved the soundness 
and wisdom of the constitutional principles they 
established, but while they were doing this they had 
to meet with a great deal of criticism and abuse. 
Kentucky had furnished a number of the cases, 
and at least two important interests of hers (relief^ 
system and contested land titles) had been decided j 
adversely to the interests of the classes which had 
least education and property, and most votes. 

The message of Governor Desha of Kentucky, 
November 7, 1825, 1 deserves attentive reading from 
any one who seeks to trace the movement of de- 
cisive forces in American political history. The 
Governor denounces all banks, and especially the 
Bank of the United States, because they are all 
hostile to the power and rights of the States. He 
says that the Bank of the United States has been 
taken under the protection of the federal Supreme 
Court, and that these two foreign powers, so allied, 
have overthrown the sovereignty of Kentucky. He 
complains of the State Court of Appeals, which had 
declared the law taxing the Bank of the United 
States to be constitutional, for not maintaining its 
i 29 Niles, 219. 


ground, but receding, and deferring to the con- 
trary decision of the Supreme Court of the United 
States. He congratulates the State, however, that 
the abolition of the old court has removed the 
compliant head from the State judiciary, and that 
the new court will maintain the sovereignty of 
the State against federal encroachments. He de- 
clares that the emigration from the State is due to 
the decision about the occupying claimant law. He 
denounces the federal courts for not recognizing 
the State relief laws in regard to writs issued by 
themselves, and he regards the State as robbed of 
self-government by this intrusion of foreign courts, 
which bring with them an independent code of 
procedure. He defends the relief system, and 
although he does not distinctly say so, what he 
means is that the federal courts, by their intrusion, 
enable foreign creditors to escape the treatment 
which Kentucky creditors have to submit to under 
the laws of their country. This was the invasion 
of the "sovereignty" of Kentucky which was re- 
sented most. 

In the same message, Desha suggested that the 
Legislature should abolish both the Courts of Ap- 
peals, and he promised that, if this should be done, 
and a new court should be established, he would 
select the judges for it equally from the two ex- 
isting ones. In 1826 the State election was again 
a contest between old court and new court. The 
old court carried both Houses. 1 The replevin laws 
1 Collins, 93. 



were repealed. The acts of the new court were 
treated as null. The new court seized the records, 
and held them by military force. Civil war was 
avoided only by the moderation of the old court 
party. The Legislature repealed the law consti- 
tuting the new court, but the Governor vetoed the 
repeal. 1 It was passed over his veto, December 
30, 1826. By resignations and new appointments 
among the judges, the court was reconstituted as a 
single anti-relief body in the years 1828-29. 

In 1827 the currency of the States in the Mis- 
sissippi Valley was fairly good. There remained 
only $800,000 of Commonwealth paper out, and 
this was merchandise, not currency. 2 The bank 
held notes of individuals to the amount of one and 
a half millions, and real estate worth 30,592. 
Hence there was due to it a balance from the 
public, after all its notes should be paid in, of 
$ 600,000. Its debtors had this to pay in specie 
or its equivalent, or else the bank would get their- 
property. This sum, therefore, fairly represents 
the net final swindle which the relief system per- 
petrated on its dupes, to say nothing of its effects 
on creditors and on the general prosperity of the 
State. The bank never had over $7,000 capital 
even spent upon it. Its total issue of bits of paper 
was printed with the denomination dollars up to 
three millions. By this issue it had won $600,000 
worth of real property, or twenty per cent in five 
years. Who got this gain ? It seems that there 
i 31 Niles, 310. a 32 Niles, 37. 


must have been private and personal interests at 
stake to account for the rage which was excited by 
the decisions which touched this bank, and by the 
intensity of friendship for it which was manifested 
by a leading political clique. Undoubtedly the 
interest was that of the clique of politicians who 
got lucrative offices, power, and influence through 
the bank. Wherever a Bank of the State was set 
up, the development of such a clique, with all the 
attendant corruptions and abuses, took place. 

In 1828 the parties were still relief and anti- 
relief, the former for Jackson, the latter for Ad- 
ams. The ideas, however, had changed somewhat. 
^A. "relief" man, in .1828, meant a State rights 
man 'and strict constructionist, who wanted to put 
bounds to the supposed encroachments ,qf the fede- 
ral power, especially the judiciary, and indeed to 
the constitutional functions of the judiciary in 
general. Metcalf, the anti-relief candidate for 
Governor, in 1828, defeated Barry, the relief can- 
didate, after a very hard fight, 1 but the State gave 
7,912 majority for Jackson. 

Two later decisions of the Supreme Court may 
here be mentioned, because they carried forward 
the same constitutional tendency which has been 
described. They were connected with the political 
movements which have been mentioned, and with 
those which came later. 

In Bank of the Commonwealth of Kentucky 
vs. Wister et al. (1829), 2 it was held that the 

1 Collins, 93. 2 2 Peters, 318. 


bank must pay specie on demand in return for a 
deposit which had been made with it of its own 
notes, although these notes were, when deposited, 
worth only fifty cents on the dollar. It had been 
provided in the act establishing the bank that it 
should pay specie. The bank tried to plead the 
non-suability of a State, but it was held that, if the 
State was sole owner and issued as a sovereign, it 
would be non-suable. Then, however, the notes 
would be bills of credit. If the State issued as a 
banker, not a sovereign, then it was suable under 
the decision in the case of the Planter's Bank of 
Georgia. In Craig vs. Missouri (1830), 1 a law of 
Missouri (1821) establishing loan offices to loan 
State currency issues on mortgages was declared 
unconstitutional as to the notes issued, which were 
bills of credit. In this decision bills of credit 
were defined. 

i 4 Peters, 410. 





JACKSON came to power as the standard-bearer 
of a new upheaval of democraj^^ and under ^a- pro- 
fession of new and fuller realization of the Jef- 
fersonian democratic-republican principles. The 
causes of the new strength of democracy were 
economic. It gained strength every year. Every- 
thing in the situation of the country favored it. 
The cotton culture advanced with great rapidity, 
and led to a rapid settlement of the Southwestern 
States. The Ohio States filled up with a very 
strong population. Steamboats came into common 
use, and they had a value for this country, with 
its poor roads, but grand rivers, bays, sounds, and 
lakes, such as they had for no other country. 
Railroads began to be built just after Jackson's 
election. The accumulation of capital in the coun- 
try was not yet great. It was inadequate for the 
chances which were offered by the opening up of 
the continent. Hence the industrial organization 
did not take the form of a wages organization. 
Individuals, however, found the chances of very 
free and independent activity, which easily pro* 


duced a simple abundance. The conditions were 
siH-h as to give to each a sense of room and power. 
Individual energy and enterprise were greatly fa- 
vored. Of course, the effect on the character of 
the people was certain. They became bold, inde- 

enterprising. They were 

versatile, and adapted themselves easily to circum- 
stances. They were not disturbed in an emer- 
gency ; and they were shrewd in dealing with 
difficulties of every kind. The State constitutions 
became more and more purely democratic, under 
the influence of this character of the people. So- 
cial usages threw off all the forms which had been 
inherited from colonial days. The tone of mind 
was developed which now marks the true, unspoiled 
American, as distinguished from all Europeans, 
although it has scarcely been noticed by the critics 
who have compared the two ; namely, the tone of 
mind which has no understanding at all of the no- 
tion that A could demean himself by talking to B, 
or that B could be raised in his own estimation or 
that of other people by being spoken to by A, no 
matter who A and B might be. Ceremonies, titles, 
forms of courtesy and etiquette, were distasteful. 
Niles did not like it that members of Congress 
were called " honorable." 1 He criticised diplo- 
matic usages. He devoted a paragraph to denun- 
ciation of a fashionable marriage in Boston, which 
took place in King's (!) Chapel, and at which the 
people cheered the groom. He objected to the 
i 37 Niles, 378. 


term " cabinet," l and said, very truly, that there is 
no cabinet in our system. He was displeased by 
public honors to the President (Monroe). As to 
republic, democracy, aristocracy, the " people," and 
other political " symbols," as we call them nowa- 
days, he held all the vague, half -educated notions 
which were then in fashion, compounded of igno- 
rance, tradition, and prejudice, and held in place 
by stereotyped phrases and dogmas with a cement 
of social envy and political suspicion. 

The people of the period found themselves happy 
and prosperous. Their lives were easy, and free 
from gross cares and from great political anxieties. 
They knew little and cared less about other coun- 
tries. They were generally satisfied with some 
crude notions and easy prejudices about institutions 
and social states of which they really had no know- 
ledge. Niles knew no more of the English Consti- 
tution and English politics than a Cherokee Indian 
knew of the politics of the United States. The 
American people did not think of their economic 
and social condition as peculiar or exceptional. 
They supposed that any other nation could be just 
like the United States if it chose. They thought 
the political institutions, or, more strictly, the po- 
litical " principles," of this country made all the 
difference. They gave their confidence to the 
great principles, accordingly, all the more because 
those principles flatter human nature. One can 
easily discern in Jackson's popularity an element 
1 40 Niles, 145. 


of instinct and personal recognition by the mass of 
tli,- people. They felt, " He is one of us." " He 
stands by us." " He is not proud, and does not 
care for style, but only for plenty of what is sound, 
strong, and good." "He thinks just as we do 
about this." The anecdotes about him which had 
the greatest currency were those which showed him 
trampling on some conventionality of polite society, 
or shocking the tastes and prejudices of people 
from " abroad." In truth Jackson never did these 
things except for effect, or when carried away by 
his feelings^Eut his adherents had a most enjoyable 
sense of their own power in supporting him in defi- 
ance of sober, cultivated people, who disliked him 
for his violence, ignorance, and lack of cultivation^ 

The Jackson party flocked to Washington to 
attend the inauguration. " They really seem," 
said Webster, 1 " to think that the country has 
been rescued from some great danger." There 
was evidently a personal and class feeling involved 
in their triumph. At the inauguration ball a great 
crowd of people assembled who had not been ac- 
customed to such festivities. Jackson refused to 
call on Adams, partly because, as he said, Adams 
got his office by a bargain, and partly because he 
thought that Adams could have stopped the cam- 
paign references to Mrs. Jackson. That lady had 
died in the previous December, and Jackson was 
in a very tender frame of mind in regard to her 

i 1 Curtis's Webster, 340. On the crowd, see 1 Webster's Cor- 
respondence, 470, 473. 


memory. 1 Adams was hurt at the slight put upon 
him, and thought that he had deserved other treat- 
ment from Jackson. 2 In March, 1832, R. M. 
Johnson came to Adams to try to bring about a 
reconciliation with Jackson. Nothing came of it. 3 
The inaugural address contained nothing of any 
importance. There was a disposition to give Jack- 
son a fair chance. Every one was tired of party 
strife, 4 and there was no disposition in any quarter 
to make factious opposition. The opposition had 
taken the name of national republicans. They 
never acknowledged any succession to the federal- 
ists. .They claimed to belong to the true republi- 
can party, but to hold national theories instead 
of State rights theories. *The Jackson party was 
heterogeneous. In opposition it had been held 
together by the hope of success, but it had not 
been welded together into any true party. No 
one yet knew what Jackson thought about any 
political question. It had been an unfortunate 
necessity to send him to the Senate in 1823. He 
had made a record on tariff and internal improve- 
ments. His Coleman letter, it is true, left him 
safely vague on tariff, but he could only lose, he 
could not possibly gain, by making a record on 
anything. His advantage over the " statesmen " 
was that every one of them was on record a dozen 
times on every public question. 

1 The New York American followed her even beyond the grave 
With a scurrilous epitaph. 

2 8 Adams, 128. 3 8 Adams, 484. 4 5 Ann. Eeg. 1. 



Calhoun had been reflected Vice-President. He 
now understood that Jackson would take only one 
term, and that he (Calhoun) would have all Jack- 
son's support in 1832. Van Buren, however, who 
had come into Jackson's political family at a late 
date, had views and ambitions which crossed this 
programme of Calhoun. These two men came into/ 
collision in the formation of the cabinet. Jackson 
introduced two innovations. He put the Secre- 
taries back more nearly into the place in which 
they belong by the original theory of the law. He 
made them executive clerks or staff officers. The 
fashion has grown up of calling the Secretaries 
the President's "constitutional advisers." It is 
plain that they are not anything of the kind. He 
is not bound to consult them, and, if he does, it 
does not detract from his responsibility. Jackson, 
bv_ the necessity of his character and preparation, 
ami by the nature of the position to which he had 
been elected, must lean on somebody. He had a 
number of intimate friends and companions on 
whom he relied. They did not hold important 
public" positions. They came to be called the 
" kitchen-cabinet." The men were William B. 
LewisjAmos Kencfall, Duff Green, and Isaac Hill. 
If the Secretaries had been the " constitutional 
advisers" of the President, their first right and 
duty would have been to break off his intimacy 
with these irresponsible persons, and to prevent 
their influence. Jackson's second innovation was 
-that he did npt hold cabinet councils. Hence his 


administration lacked unity and discipline. It did 
not have the strength of hearty and conscious 
cooperation. Each Secretary went his way, and 
gossip and newsmongering had a special field of 
activity open to them. The cabinet was not a 
strong one. Van Buren was Secretary of State. 
S. D. Ingham was Secretary of the Treasury. He 
had been an active Pennsylvania politician, and a 
member of the House for the last seven years. 
John H. Eaton, of Kentucky, was Secretary of 
War. He had married, for his first wife, one 
of Mrs. Jackson's nieces, and had been an in- 
timate friend of Jackson. ... He was brother-in-law 
of Lewis. He finished, in 1817, a life of Jackson, 
which had been begun by Major John Reid. He 
had been in the Senate since 1818. John Branch, 
of North Carolina, was Secretary of the Navy. 
He had been in the Senate since 1823. 1 John M. 
Berrien, of Georgia, was Attorney-General. He 
had been in the Senate since 1824. William 
T. Barry, of Kentucky, who had been chief jus- 
tice of the new Supreme Court of that State, was 
Postmaster-General, with a seat in the cabinet, a 
privilege to which that officer had not previously 
been admitted. McLean passed into high favor 
with the new administration, and was asked to 
keep the postmaster-generalship with its new rank. 
When the general proscription began he would 
not admit it as to his department. Pie was trans- 
ferred to the bench of the Supreme Court. 2 Ing 
1 See page 122 and note 2. 2 8 Adams, 112. 


Jham, Branch, and Berrien were understood to be 
the Calhoun men in the cabinet. 

The men who controlled the administration were 

the members of the kitchen cabinet. Lewis does 

not appear to have had any personal ambition. 

He wanted to return to Tennessee, but Jackson 

remonstrated that Lewis must not abandon him in 

the position to which he had been elevated. 1 Lewis 

! was made Second Auditor of the Treasury. He 

II only asked for an office with little work to be 

! done. 2 His character and antecedents have already 

'been noticed. It will appear below that he was 

far more unwilling to relinquish office than he had 

been to take it. 

Amos Kendall was born in Massachusetts in 
| 1789. He was a graduate of Dartmouth College, 
i In 1814 he went to Washington. In 1815 he 
|! was a tutor in Henry Clay's family. He edited 
a newspaper, the Frankfort "Argus of Western 
I] America," and practised law, and was postmaster 
Ij at Georgetown, Kentucky. He became a leading 
' " relief " man, director in the Bank of the Common- 
! wealth, and as such an enemy of the Bank of the 
ji United States. Many of Clay's old supporters, 
(I who became relief men, were carried over to Jack- 
son between 1824 and 1828. Kendall was one of 
these. He had expected an office from Clay, and 
was offered one, but it did not satisfy him. He 
had an acrimonious correspondence with Clay in 
1828. 3 He was in debt. Clay was one of his 

1 3 Parton, 180. 2 Kendall's Autobiography, 308. 

3 Tflf'qrnpli Extra, 305. N 


creditors. His war with Clay won him Jackson's 
favor. Kendall was an enigmatical combination 
of good and bad, great and small traits. His abil- 
ity to handle important State questions, and his 
skill as a politician, are both beyond question. He 
prostituted his talents to partisan purposes, and 
was responsible as much as any other one man 
for the bad measures adopted by Jackson. In his 
private character he showed admirable traits of 
family devotion and generosity. As a public man 
he belonged to the worst school of American poli- 
ticians. He brought the vote of Kentucky to 
"Washington, and was appointed Fourth Auditor 
of the Treasury. As time went on he proved more 
and more the master spirit of the administration. 
Harriet Martineau wrote of him, in 1836, as fol- 
lows : " I was fortunate enough once to catch a 
glimpse of the invisible Amos Kendall, one of the 
most remarkable men in America. He is supposed 
to be the moving spring of the whole administra- 
tion, the thinker, planner, and doer ; but it is all 
in the dark. Documents are issued of an excellence 
which prevents their being attributed to persons 
who take the responsibility of them ; a correspond- 
ence is kept up all over the country for which no 
one seems to be answerable ; work is done, of goblin 
extent and with goblin speed, which makes men 
look about them with a superstitious wonder ; and 
the invisible Amos Kendall has the credit of it 
all. . . . He is undoubtedly a great genius. He 
unites with his ' great talent for silence ' a splendid 


audacity." 1 She goes on to say that he rarely 
appeared in public, and seemed to keep up the 
mystery. She attributes some of Lewis's work to 
Kendall, but the passage is a very fair representa- 
tion of the opinions of Washington society about 
Kendall. He had very great executive and literary 
ability. Claiborne said of him, in 1856 : " When I 
first saw him, he had a whooping voice, an asth- 
matic cough, with a stooping frame and a phthisicky 
physiognomy. . . . Yet this little whiffet of a man, 
whom the hoosiers would not call even an individ- 
ual, . . . was the Atlas that bore on his shoulders 
the weight of Jackson's administration. He ori- 
ginated, or was consulted in advance, upon every 
great measure, and what the prompt decision and 
indomitable will of the illustrious chief resolved 
upon, the subtle and discriminating intellect of 
Kendall elaborated and upheld." 2 

Duff Green was a fighting partisan editor. He 
had the virtue of his trade. He was loyal to the 
standard to which he had once sworn. He was a 
Calhoun man, and he continued to be a retainer of 
the most unflinching loyalty. For the first years 
of Jackson's administration, Green, as editor of 
the " organ," stood on guard all the time to ad- 
vance the cause of the administration. 

1 1 Martineau's Western Travel, 155. Cf. also 1 Society in 
America^ 45. 

2 Quoted in Hudson's Journalism, 243. Cf. also p. 248, where 
Rives's assertion is quoted, in contradiction, that Jackson was 
the Atlas of his own administration. 


Isaac Hill was bora in Massachusetts in 1788. 
His education was picked up in a printing-office. 
In 1810 he bought and began to edit the " Pa- 
triot," 1 published at Concord, New Hampshire. 
He edited his paper with skill and ability, propa- 
gating ""true republicanism " in partibus infide- 
lium, for the people about him were almost all 
federalists. His main " principle " was that things 
were in the hands of an " aristocracy," and that he 
ought to organize the " honest yeomanry " in order 
to oust that aristocracy from power. 2 He gained 
adherents. His paper became influential, and he 
built up a democratic party in New Hampshire. 3 
He had long favored strict party proscription. In 
1818 he remonstrated with Governor Plumer for 
appointing a federalist sheriff. 4 He had the ran- 
corous malignity of those men who have been in a 
contest with persons who have treated them from 
above downwards. He was not able to carry New 
Hampshire for Jackson in 1828, but the vote was 
24,000 for Adams to 20,600 for Jackson. Hill 

1 Hudson's Journalism, 272, on the Patriot. 

2 Bradley's Hill 

8 He had kept a boarding-house, at which members of the 
Legislature, etc., boarded. In 1823 he is referred to as a power. 
1 Webster's Correspondence, 324, During the New Hampshire 
election of 1830, forged documents were sent on from Washington 
to prove Upham, the anti-Jackson candidate for Governor, guilty 
of smuggling Tinder the embargo. 39 Niles, 156. Mason charged 
Hill with having sent the papers. 1 Webster's Correspondence, 

* Plumer's Plumer, 471. 


was immediately taken into the innermost circle at 

The election of Jackson meant that an unedu- 
cated Indian fighter had been charged with the 
power of the presidency, and that these four men 
wielded it through and for him. Van Buren fol- 
lowed, in order to win the aid of Jackson for the 
succession. He did not put forth any guiding 
force. Eaton had some share in the kitchen cab- 
inet. No other member of the cabinet had any 
influence. Barry, another relief man, but person- 
ally quite insignificant, was at the disposal of the 
kitchen cabinet. Henry Lee had made himself 
" impossible " by an infamous domestic crime. He 
was offended at the poor share in the spoils offered 
to him, and withdrew, relieving the administration 
of a load. Edward Livingston was in the Senate, 
but no direct influence by him on the administra- 
tion, during the first two years, is discernible. The 
same may be said of Benton. 

Some vague expressions in the inaugural about 
" reform " and the civil service frightened the 
office-holders, who had already been alarmed by ru- 
mors of coming proscription. There was an army 
of office-seekers and editors in Washington, who 
had a very clear and positive theory that the vic- 
tory which they had won, under Jackson's name, 
meant the acquisition and distribution amongst 
them of all the honors and emoluments of the fed- 
eral government. They descended on the federal 
administration as if upon a conquered domain. 


The office-holders of that day had generally staked 
their existence on the mode of getting a living 
which the civil service offered. It did not pay 
well, but it was supposed to be easy, tranquil, and 
secure. All these persons who were over forty 
years of age saw ruin staring them in the face. 
It was too late for them to change their habits or 
acquire new trades. 1 All the stories by eye-wit- 
nesses testify to the distress and terror of the "ins," 
and the rapacity of the " outs," at that time. It 
is certain that the public service lost greatly by the 
changes. Sometimes they were made on account 
of trivial disrespect to Jackson. 2 It is not clear 
who was the author *or instigator of the policy. 
Lewis is said to have opposed it. Kendall does 
not appear to have started with the intention of 
proscription. March 24, 1829, he wrote to the 
editor of the Baltimore " Patriot : " 3 " The inter- 
ests of the country demand that the [Fourth Au- 
ditor's] office shall be filled with men of business, 
and not with babbling politicians. Partisan feel- 
ings shall not enter here, if I can keep them out. 
To others belongs the whole business of electioneer- 
ing." Probably Jackson believed that the depart- 
ments were full of corrupt persons, and that Adams 
and Clay had demoralized the whole civil service, 

1 Washing-ton removed nine persons, one a defaulter ; Adams, 
ten, one a defaulter ; Jefferson, thirty-nine ; Madison, five, three 
defaulters ; Monroe, nine ; Adams, two, both for cause. 5 Ann. 
Keg. 19. 

2 1 Curtis's Webster, 348. 

8 49 Niles, 43. Cf. Kendall's Autobiography, 292. . 


so that a complete change was necessary. It would 
be quite in character for Jackson to take all the 
campaign declamation literally. One man, Tobias 
Watkins, Fourth Auditor, was found short in his 
accounts. 1 This seemed to offer proof of all that 
had been affirmed. The proscription was really 
enforced by the logic of the methods and teachings 
of the party while in opposition. The leaders had 
been taken literally by the party behind them, and 
by the workers, writers, and speakers who had en- 
listed under them. If they had failed to reward 
their adherents by the spoils, or if they had avowed 
the hollowness and artificiality of their charges 
against the last administration, they would have 
thrown their party into confusion, and would have 
destroyed their power. It has been shown above 
how the spoils system had been developed, since 
the beginning of the century, in Pennsylvania and 
New York. 2 It is a crude and incorrect notion 
that Andrew Jackson corrupted the civil service. 
His administration is only the date at which a cor- 
rupt use of the spoils of the public service, as a 

1 Adams calls this " the bitterest drop in the cup of my afflic- 
tions." 8 Adams, 144. Again he says, " The wrong done to me 
and my administration \>y the misconduct of Watkins deserves a 
severer animadversion i'.om me than from Jackson." 8 Adams, 
290. He there depicts Jackson's rancor against Watkins. Cf. 
p. 453. Niles describes the virulent political animus of the prose- 
cution. 36 Niles, 421. After Watkins's term of imprisonment 
was over, he was detained on account of an unpaid fine. By 
Jackson's personal order a label, " Criminal's Apartment," was 
put over the door of the room in which he was kept. 

2 Page 131. 


cement for party^>rganization^_under democratic- 
republicaii self-government, having been perfected 
into a highly finished system in New York and 
Pennsylvania, was first employed on the federal 
arena. The student who seeks to penetrate the 
causes of the corruption of the civil service must 
go back to study the play of human nature under 
the political dogmas and institutions of the States 
named. He cannot rest satisfied with the explan- 
ation that " Andrew Jackson did it." In a con- 
versation between two senators, about the reasons 
for Jackson's popularity, which is reported by a 
German visitor, it is said that he acted on two 
maxims : " Give up no friend to win an enemy," 
and " Be strong with your friends and then you 
can defy your enemies." l These are grand max- 
ims of wise warfare, but they sound like Kendall, 
not like Jackson. The latter certainly never for- 
mulated any philosophical maxims, but he acted 
on these two. 

Thirty-eight of Adams's nominations had been 
postponed by the Senate, so as to give that patron- 
age to Jackson. Between March 4, 1829, and 
March 22, 1830, 491 postmasters and 239 other 
officers were removed, and as the new appointees 
changed all their clerks, deputies, etc., it was esti- 
mated that 2,000 changes in the civil service took 
place. 2 Jackson, as we have seen, had made a 
strong point against the appointment of members 

1 2 Aristokratie in America, 177. 

2 Holmes's speech in the Senate, April 28, 1830. 


of Congress to offices in the gift of the President. 

In one v^** lllfi afllUli^forf TTinriT 1 * r>M> 

cress to office than any one of his predecessors in 

g j ,mt~m~~***^*tmffm*tmr-T~-~~~ l ** a '' l * m 

his whole term. 1 The oenate, although democratic, 
refused to confirm many of the nominations made. 
Henry Lee, appointed consul to Algiers, and James 
B. Gardner, register of the land office, were unani- 
mously rejected. Others were rejected by large 
votes. 2 Isaac Hill was one of these. Adams was 
told that Hill's rejection was caused, in part, by 
the publication ,by him of a pamphlet, containing 
" a false and infamous imputation " on Mrs. Ad- 
ams ; so that Adams also had a grievance like 
Jackson's. 3 Webster said that, but for the fear of 
Jackson's popularity out-of-doors, the Senate would 
have rejected half his appointments. 4 The Senate 
objected to the obvious distribution of rewards 
among the partisan editors who had run country 
newspapers in Jackson's influence. 5 Eaton had 
visited Binns, and had made to him a distinctly 
corrupt proposition to reward him with public 
printing, 6 if he would turn to Jackson. The re- 
jection of the editors was construed by the Jackson 
men as a proscription of " printers " by the " aris- 
tocratic " Senate. 7 Kendall was confirmed by the 
casting vote of Calhoun, for fear that he would, if 
not confirmed, set up a newspaper in competition 

1 5 Ann. Beg., 20. 2 5 Ann. Beg., 21. 

8 8 Adams, 217. 4 1 Webster's Correspondence, 501. 

6 1 Webster's Correspondence, 488. 6 Binns, 253. 

7 Kendall's Autobiography, 370. New York Courier and En- 
quirer, in Bradley's Hill, 105. 


with Green's " Telegraph " for the position of ad- 
ministration organ. 1 The view of the matter which 
was promulgated, and which met with general ac- 
ceptance, was : " The printer and editor Hill, and 
the schoolmaster and editor Kendall, both enter- 
prising sons of dear Yankee-land, were especially 
eyesores in the sight of this exclusive aristocracy." 2 
On subsequent votes some of the appointments 
were confirmed, for it was found that Jackson was 
thrown into a great rage against the Senate which 
dared reject his appointments. He was delighted 
when Hill, in 1831, was elected by the Legislature 
of New Hampshire a member of the Senate, which 
had refused to confirm him as Second Comptroller 
of the Treasury. Jackson threw all the adminis- 
tration influence in favor of Hill's election. Here 
we have an illustration of a method of his of which 
we shall have many illustrations hereafter. When 
he was crossed by any one in a course in which he 
was engaged, he drew back to gather force with 
which to carry his point in some mode so much 
more distasteful to his opponents than his first 
enterprise that it would be a kind of punishment 
to them and a redress tQ himself . Hill was elected 
senator from a motive of this kind. The " Courier 
and Enquirer " drew a picture of him entering the 
Senate and saying to the men who violated their 
oaths by attempting to disfranchise citizens : " Give 
me room stand back do you know me ? I am 

1 Kendall's Autobiography, 371. 

2 Bradley's Hill, 83. 


that Isaac Hill, of New Hampshire, who, in this 
very spot you slandered, vilified, and stript of his 
rights the people, your masters, have sent me 
here to take my seat in this very chamber as your 
equal and your peer." 1 Hill resigned in 1836. 

.J^an Buren and Calhoun at once began to 
struggle for the control of the patronage which 
was made disposable by the system of proscrip- 
tion. Their contest for the succession rent the 
administration ; and this ending came about in a 
very odd way. It was a very noteworthy fact that 
this adimmsjbmtion, which represented a certain 
contempt for social forms and etiquette,, should im- 
mediately~go to pieces on a question of that kind. 
So true is it that etiquette is never burdensome 
until we try to dispense with it. The strange story 
is as follows : In January, 1829, John H. Eaton 
married Mrs. Timberlake, widow of a purser in 
the navy, who had, a short time before, committed 
suicide, while on service in the Mediterranean, 
because he could not conquer habits of excessive 
drinking. Mrs. Timberlake was the daughter of a 
Washington tavern keeper. As Peggy O'NeiLshe 
had been well known about Washington. Eaton 
had paid her such attention, before her husband's 
death, as to provoke gossip. He consulted Jackson 
before the marriage. Jackson, having in mind the 
case of his own wife, was chivalrously ready to 
take sides with any woman whose reputation was 
assailed. He made no objection to the marriage. 
1 Bradley's Hill, 105, 107. 


When it occurred, several persons remonstrated 
with Jackson about it, on the ground that Eaton 
was to be in the cabinet, and that it would hurt the 
administration. Jackson replied with spirit to the 
effect that Mrs. Eaton was not to be in the cabinet. 
If he had kept that attitude towards the matter 
there might have been no trouble. By Eaton's ap- 
pointment his wife was introduced to the first circle 
in Washington* ^he wives of the other Secretaries 
and the wife of the Vice-President did not recog- 
nize her. She tried to force her way, and General 
Jackson tried to help her. He made a political 
question of it. R. M. Johnson was the agent for 
conferring with the Secretaries to prevail on them 
to persuade their wives to recognize Mrs. Eaton. 
The gentlemen were approached individually. 
Each said that he left such matters to his wife, 
and could not undertake to overrule her judgment. 
This answer had no effect on Jackson. Mrs. Donel- 
son, wife of Jackson's nephew and private secre- 
tary, and presiding lady at the White House, was 
as recalcitrant as any one. /She was banished to 
Tennessee for some months> ; Mrs. Huyghens, wife 
of the Dutch minister, refused to sit by Mrs. Eaton 
at a public ball. Jackson threatened to send her 
husband hpme. September 8, Lewis, pursuing his 
favorite method, wrote to inquire of Jackson in re- 
gard to a story which he remembered to have heard 
from Jackson, but which he now wanted to get into 
writing. Jackson replied on the 10th, giving de- 
tails of an incident, in 1824, when Mrs. Timber- 


lake asked his protection against General Call ; 
she, Call, Jackson, and Eaton being at the time all 
inmates of her father's house. Call's plea in justi- 
fication may be omitted. "I," writes Jackson, 
"gave him a severe lecture for taking up such 
ideas of female virtue, unless on some positive evi- 
dence of his own, of which he acknowledged he had 
none, only information and I enforced my ad- 
monition by refering him to the rebuff he had met 
with, which I trusted for the future would guard 
him from the like improper conduct. ... I then 
told you & have ever since repeated, that I had 
never seen or heard aught against the chastity of 
M rs- Timberlake that was calculated to raise even 
suspicion of her virtue in the mind of any one 
who was not under the influence of deep preju- 
dices, or prone to jealousy that I believed her a 
virtuous & much injured female." l 

The purpose of this letter seems to have been to 
get Jackson's personal testimony in favor of Mrs. 
Eaton. It certainly revealed the ground of his 
own conviction. On the same day on which it was 
written Jackson held a meeting of his cabinet, \ 
before which Ely and Campbell, two clergymen 
who were held by Jackson partly responsible for j 
the stories about Mrs. Eaton, were called to appear,/ 
Jackson interrogated them, argued with them, and 
strove to refute their statements, as a means of 
convincing the members of the cabinet that there 
was no ground for the position their wives had 
i Ford MSS. 


taken. Of course this foolish and unbecoming 
proceeding had no result. 

Van Buren, being a widower, was in a certain 
position of advantage, which he used by showing 
Mrs. Eaton public and private courtesies. In this 
way he won Jackson's heart, for as the matter went 
on Jackson became more and more engaged in it. 
On the other hand, Caljhoun suffered in Jackson's 
good graces by the fault of Mrs. Calhoun, who had 
been conspicuous for disapproval of Mrs. Eaton. 
^Jackson had been growing cold towards Calhoun 
for some time. He doubted if Calhoun was thor- 
oughly loyal to him in 1825, 1 or in 1828. He 
thought that Calhoun, in 1825, would have made 
other arrangements than those with Jackson, if any 
more convenient ones had been offered him. Cal- 
houn did, in fact, declare, in 1825, that he was 
quite neutral as between Adams and Jackson* He 
did not interfere at all with the election v 2 The 
Eaton affair was either a pretext or a caused 
widening the breach between them. The factions 
opposed to Calhoun tried to increase the bad feel- 
ing. Jackson was led to believe, and he often 
affirmed, that the attack on Mrs. Eaton was a plot 
to drive Eaton out of the cabinet. When forced 
to justify his own interference, he put it on this 
ground. - He said that Clay was at the bottom of 
the attack on Mrs. Eaton. All this trouble in 

1 Wise (p. 82) says that Jackson was very angry with Calhoun 
after the election in 1825. 

2 Cobb, 219. 


the cabinet remained for the time unknown to the 

Lewis's statement, given by Parton, 1 covers the 
history of all Jackson's relations with Calhoun. 
Lewis had an inkling, in 1819, that Calhoun had 
not, as Jackson supposed, been Jackson's friend 
in Monroe's cabinet, in the Seminole war affair. 
Lewis wrote to the "Aurora," suggesting that 
opinion, but Jackson wrote to him from Wash- 
ington to dismiss any suspicion as to Calhoun's 
unfriendliness in that matter. It seems to be 
necessary to read between the lines of Lewis's 
statement, on pages 315-30. Did he not always 
retain his suspicion of Calhoun ? Was he not on 
the watch for any evidence to confirm it ? He 
speaks as if he had rested content with Jackson's 
assurance, and had been corrected later by accident 
or entirely on the initiative of others. He does 
not mention the first attempt made by the old 
Crawford men to get over into the Jackson camp. 
It was not an easy march, for in 1824 the Craw- 
ford men, as the "regulars," hated intensely the 
Jackson men, as upstarts and disorganizes. Craw- 
ford had carried into his retirement a venomous 
and rancorous spirit, the chief object of which was 
Calhoun. He could join any one to hurt Calhoun. 

Lewis wrote to Hayward, March 28, 1827 : " In 

justice to Mr. Calhoun, however, I must say that I 

am inclined to think more favorably of him now 

than formerly. This is a delicate subject and 

1 3 Parton, 310. 


ought to be touched with great caution. It is a 
rock upon which we may split." 1 In April, 1827, 
Van Buren and Cambreleng visited Crawford, and 
first established ties between him and Jackson. 
The first effect was a letter from Crawford to 
Balch, a neighbor of Jackson, December 14, 1827, 
stating that Calhoun and his friends bandied about 
the epithet " military chieftain ; " also that Cal- 
houn favored Adams until Clay came out for 
Adams ; 2 and adding that it would do Jackson a 
service to obtain assurances for Crawford that Jack- 
son's advancement would not benefit Calhoun. 3 
This letter was meant to separate Jackson and 
Calhoun, and it may have had a general effect. 
Specific consequences cannot be traced to it. In 
1828 there was a project to run Crawford for Vice- 
President with Adams. 4 Adams refused. 5 Craw- 
ford also, in 1828, by private letters to the Georgia 
electors, tried to persuade them not to vote for 
Calhoun. 6 In the same year he made friends with 
Clay, writing to him that the charge of bargain 
was absurd. 

According to Lewis's story, James A. Hamilton, 
on a Jackson electioneering tour, went to see Craw- 
ford, in January, 1828, in order to reconcile him 
with Jackson. Lewis instructed Hamilton what to 
aay to Crawford on Jackson's part. Hamilton did 

1 Ford MSS. 

2 Cf. Lewis, in 3 Parton, 315, on the allusion to Banquo's ghost 
in Webster's reply to Hayne. 

s 40 Niles, 12. 4 33 Niles, 315. 

6 7 Adams, Diary, 390. 6 Cobb, 240. 


not see Crawford. He left the business in the 
hands of Forsyth. Forsyth soon wrote to Hamil- 
ton that Crawford affirmed that Jackson's enmity 
against him was groundless, since it was not he, 
but Calhoun, in Monroe's cabinet, who had tried 
to have Jackson censured for his proceedings in 
Florida in 1818. In April or May Lewis was in 
New York. Hamilton showed him Forsyth's let- 
ter. For the time Lewis kept this information 
quite to himself. He was too clever to spoil the 
force of it by using it too soon, and he well under- 
stood how, in the changes and chances of politics, a 
conjuncture might arise in which such a fact would 
gain tenfold force. 

In April, 1828, Henry Lee tried to draw Cal- 
'houn into a correspondence about the construction 
of the orders to Jackson in 1818. Calhoun offered 
to give Jackson any statements or explanations, 
but declined to correspond with any one else. 1 

In November, 1829, at the height of the Peggy 
O'Neil affair, Jackson gave a dinner to Monroe. 
At this dinner Blngold affirmed that Monroe alone 
stood by Jackson in 1818. If Kingold did not 
have his cue, he was by chance contributing aston- 
ishingly to Lewis's plans. After dinner Lewis and 
Eaton kept up a conversation, within ear-shot of 
Jackson, about what Kingold had said. Of course 
Jackson's attention was soon arrested, and he be- 
gan to ask questions. Lewis then told him that he 
had seen, eighteen months before, the above men- 
i 40 Niles, 14. 


tioned letter of Forsyth to Hamilton. Jackson dis- 
patched Lewis to New York the next morning to 
get that letter. In all this story, it is plain how 
adroitly these men managed the General, and how 
skilful they were in producing " accidents." It is 
evident that they did not think it was time yet to 
bring about the explosion. Lewis came back from 
New York without Forsyth' s letter, and said that 
it was thought best to get a letter directly from 
Crawford, containing an explicit statement. In 
this position the matter rested all winter. It is 
perfectly clear that the Jackson managers lost faith 
in Calhoun's loyalty to Jackson and the Jackson 
party, and that they were hostile to him in 182728, 
but could not yet afford to break with him. Jack- 
son clung to his friendships and alliances with a 
certain tenacity. As Calhoun was drawn more and 
more into nullification, the Jackson clique took a 
more positive attitude in opposition to it. 

In the autumn of 1829 the clique around Jack- 
son had decided that he must run again, if he 
should live, in 1832, in order to consolidate the 
party, which no one else could lead to victory at 
that time, and that Van Buren must succeed him 
in 1836. 1 Lewis was already committed to Van 
Buren, and Parton brings us some more of Lew- 
is's invaluable testimony as to this arrangement. 2 
Here, for once, a wire-puller put on paper a clear 

1 Parton says that Benton was booked for the period 1844-52. 
3 Parton, 297. 

2 3 Parton, 293, 297. 


description of his proceedings in a typical case. 
There was fear in the Jackson camp, in 1829, on 
account of Jackson's very bad health, that he 
might not live through his term. Lewis says that 
he and Jackson were both anxious that Van Buren 
should succeed Jackson, and they believed that, if 
Jackson should die, a political testament left by 
him would have great influence. Accordingly 
Jackson wrote a letter to his old friend, Judge 
Overton, of Tennessee, dated December 31, 1829, 
praising Van Buren, and expressing grave doubts 
about Calhoun. A copy was duly kept, for Judge 
Overton was not informed of the contingent use 
for which the letter was intended, and no risk 
was taken as to his care in preserving the letter. 
This provision having been made for the case that 
Jackson should die, the next thing was to provide 
for his reelection, in case he should live. 

December 19, 1829, the " Courier and Enquirer" 
came out in favor of Van Buren for the succession, 
if Jackson should not stand for reelection. The 
" Telegraph " was annoyed at this, called it " prema- 
ture," and likely to produce division. 1 These two 
papers, representing the Van Buren and Calhoun 
factions in the administration party, were engaged, 
during the winter, in acrimonious strife. 2 Niles no 
doubt expressed the sentiment of sensible people 
when he said, April, 1830, that he did not see the 
necessity of action on the subject at that time. His 
statement, however, only showed how little he un- 
i 37 Niles, 300. 2 38 Niles, 169. 


derstood the processes by which the people mani- 
fest their power of self-government. 

March 11, 1830, Lewis wrote to Colonel Stan- 
baugh, of Pennsylvania, suggesting that the Penn- 
sylvania Legislature should address to Jackson an 
appeal to stand for reelection. To the end that 
they might send just the proper appeal, Lewis in- 
closed it to them, already prepared for their signa- 
tures. Lewis wrote to Stanbaugh that he did not 
think it would be wise for Jackson's friends in 
Washington to [be known to] lead in the move- 
ment for his reelection, and Pennsylvania, the 
stronghold of his popularity, seemed to be the 
most advantageous place from which the move- 
ment might [appear to] start. The address came 
back duly signed with sixty-eight names. It was 
published in the " Pennsylvania Eeporter," and 
copied all over the country as a spontaneous and 
irrepressible call of the people to the " old hero " 
not to desert his country. The enterprise did not 
run off quite so smoothly as Lewis's narrative 
would imply. There was strong opposition* by the 
Calhoun faction in the Pennsylvania Legislature 
to Jackson's renomination, and a distinct renomi- 
nation could not be carried. 1 In April a caucus 
of the New York Legislature declared that it re- 
sponded " to the sentiment of the Legislature of 
Pennsylvania." This caucus was prompted from 
Washington, and was managed by the editor of 
the " Courier." 2 So soon as the example was set, 
1 38 NUes, 170. 2 Ibid. 


other Legislatures followed it. In January, 1831, 
the " Globe " said that General Jackson might be 
regarded as before the country for reelection. 1 

April 13, 1880 (Jafferaon^ birthday), while 
still the Ifitfrre from Crawford wast not receivecl, 
but while Jackson's mind was full of suspicion 
against Calhoun, a banquet was prepared at Wash- 
ington, which was intended to be a nullification 
demonstration. 2 Jackson gave as a toast, " Our 
eral Union : It must be preserved." This was 


war against Calliau%-who at the same banquet 
offel^elT'a toast and made a speech, the point of 
which was that liberty was worth more than union. 
How much the personal element of growing sus- 
jncjon ami. ill-will towards Calhoun had to do with 
the attitude which Jackson took up towards nulli- 
fication is a matter of conjecture and inference. 
&is*bpimons, however, deduced from hatred of the 
Hartford convention, had always been strongly 
favorable to the Union, and the men in the kitchen 
cabinet, except Green, were strong unionists, al- 
though Jackson and they all were likewise strong 
State rights men. Ten years earlier Kendall had 
maintained the major premise of nullification with 
great zeal. 8 

At the same banquet Isaac Hill offered the 
following toast and " sentiment : " 4 " Democracy : 
* Wherefore do I take my flesh in my teeth, and 

i 39 Niles, 385. 2 1 Benton, 148. 

3 Autobiography, 222. * 38 Niles, 153. 


put my life in mine hand ? Though he slay me, 
yet will I trust in him.' ' The quotation is from 
Job xiii. 14, and " he " is usually interpreted as 
referring to God. This " sentiment " therefore 
exalts democracy higher than any other known 
expression, but it is best worth remembering as an 
illustration of the slave-like spirit which is bred by 
adherence to absolutist doctrines, whether the abso- 
lute sovereign be an autocrat or a popular majority. 
Altogether, the Jefferson's birthday banquet was 
a memorable occasion. 

A letter from Crawford's own hand, disclosing 
the attitude of Calhoun in Monroe's cabinet to- 
wards Jackson and his proceedings in Florida in 
1818, was at last received about May 1, 1830. In 
this letter the John Rhea letter from Jackson to 
Monroe first comes into history, and is the pivot 
on which the whole Seminole war question, in its 
revived form, is made to turn. Crawford said that 
that letter was produced in the cabinet, and that it 
brought him over to Jackson's side, but that Cal- 
houn persisted in hostility. Monroe and every 
member of his cabinet, when appealed to, denied 
that the Rhea letter was produced, or brought into 
consideration in 1818 at all. Jackson immediately, 
May 13th, inclosed a copy of Crawford's letter to 
Calhoun, and demanded an explanation of Cal- 
houn's apparent perfidy, as he construed it. Jack- 
son's main point in this letter, which was evidently 
" copied " for him, is that Calhoun well knew, by 
virtue of his position in the cabinet, and as he had 


shown by his orders, 1 that Jackson, in all that he 
did, had the approval and connivance of the ad- 
ministration. This brought out all the tangled 
misunderstandings about Jackson's letter to Mon- 
roe and John Rhea's supposed reply. Calhoun 
at once recognized his position. He could not 
understand the allusions to previous understandings 
which had never existed, but it was plain that 
Crawford had opened an irreparable breach be- 
tween Jackson and him, and that all the hopes 
which Calhoun had built upon his alliance with 
Jackson were in ruins. He also saw that the whole 
movement was a Van Buren victory over him. He 
replied on May 20th, complaining and explaining. 
He really had no charge to repel. He had done 
nothing wrong, and was guiltless of any injustice 
or perfidy towards Jackson. The whole matter 
was a cabinet secret. Crawford had violated con- 
fidence in making known the nature of the pre- 
liminary discussions which preceded the adoption, 
by Monroe's cabinet, of a definite policy as to 
Jackson's proceedings. Calhoun was not to blame 
for any of the misunderstandings about the pre- 
vious authorization which Jackson thought that he 
had received. It seems that Calhoun might have 
set forth this position with dignity. He did not 
do so. Jackson replied to him, May 30th, in a 
very haughty tone, declaring a complete breach f 
between them on the ground of Calhoun's duplicity. 
This letter was plainly prepared by the persons 
1 See ante, page 70. 


who were working on Jackson's strong personal 
feeling about his Florida campaign to bring him 
to a breach with Calhoun, and to throw him into a 
close alliance with Van Buren. The plan was a 
complete success. Lewis says that Jackson sent 
Calhoun's letter of May 20th to Van Buren, that 
he might read it and give advice about it, but that 
Van Buren would not read it because he did not 
want to be involved in the affair at all. Lewis 
further says that Van Buren had nothing to do 
with getting up the quarrel. We may well believe 
all this. Lewis was not such a bungling workman 
in a job of that kind as to commit his principal 
to any inconvenient knowledge or compromising 

The quarrel with Calhoun brought on a quarrel 
with Duff Green and* the " Telegraph." Jackson 
wrote to Lewis from Wheeling : " Board Steam 
Boat, June 26, 1830, The truth is, he [Duff Green] 
has professed to me to be heart & soul, against 
the Bank, but his idol controls him as much as 
the shewman does his puppits, and we must get 
another organ to announce the policy, & defend 
the administration, in his hands, it is more in- 
jured than by all the opposition." 1 Amos Ken- 
dall sent for Francis P. Blair, an old Kentucky 
friend and co-worker of his, and his successor as 
editor of the " Argus." Blair was then thirty-nine 
years old. He was another old Clay man, con- 

1 Ford MSS. The mention of the " Bank " here is very note- 


verted by Kentucky relief politics into a Jackson 
man. He was a fanatical opponent of the Bank 
of the United States, and strongly opposed to nulli- 
fication. Parton says that he was forty thousand 
dollars in debt. He had been president of the 
Bank of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, and was 
indebted to the Bank of the United States. 1 Blair 
started the "Globe," and took Green's place in 
the kitchen cabinet, which now contained a very 
large element of Kentucky relief politics. Blair 
was the prince of partisan editors, a man made to 
run an organ. For he was not a mere mouth-piece. 
He was independent and able to go alone, but had 
infinite tact, discretion, and shrewdness, so that he 
was an easy man to work with. The organ, there- 
fore, worked perfectly. Every expression in it 
came directly from the White House. If Blair 
spoke without consulting Jackson, the harmony 
and sympathy of their ideas was such that Jack- 
son's mind was correctly interpreted. If Jackson 
wanted anything to be said, Blair was in such ac- 
cord that it cost him nothing in the way of conces- 
sion to say it. Ile^antt'Kendall went with Jackson 
when no one else did, and they were the leading 
spirits in the government of the country until 
The first number of the "Globe" was 
issued December 7, 1830. Since Blair had no 
capital, the paper was at first semi-weekly, but 
Lewis and Kendall brought their connections to 
bear on the office-holders to make them transfer 

1 Kendall's Autobiography, 372. 


their subscriptions from the " Telegraph " to the 
"Globe." 1 Parton says that Jackson compelled 
the departments to give Blair their printing. 

Mrs. Eaton accompanied the Jackson party to 
Tennessee in the summer of 1830. Jackson wrote 
to Lewis, July 28: "The ladies of the place 
[Franklin] had received M rs . Eaton in the most 
friendly manner, and has extended to her that 
polite attention due to her. This is as it should 
be, and is a severe comment on the combination at 
Nashville, & will lead to its prostration Until 
I got to Tyre Springs I had no conception of the 
combination & conspiracy to injure & prostrate 
Major Eaton and injure me I see the great 
Magicians hand in all this and what mortifies 
me more is to find that this combination is holding 
up & making my family the tools to injure me, 
disturb my administration, & if possible to betray 
my friend Major Eaton. This will recoil upon 
their own heads but such a combination I am 
sure never was formed before, and that my Nephew 
& Nece should permit themselves to be held up as 
the instruments, & tools, of such wickedness, is 
truly mortifying to me I was pleadsed to see 
the marked attention bestowed upon the Major & 
his family on their journey hither and the secrete 
plans engendered at the city & concluded here, & 
practised upon by some of my connections have 
been prostrated by the independant, & virtuous 
portion of this community " 2 Such was the 
l 40 Niles, 318. 2 Ford MSS. 


persistence with which he pursued this matter, and 
such the way in which he intertwined it with the 
interests and prerogatives of his high office. His 
sycophants and flatterers practiced on his passion- 
ate zeal in it. 

The quarrel between the President and the Vice- 
President did not become known until the end of 
the year 1830. Adams first refers to it in his 
. diary under date of December 22, 1830. Niles 
mentions it as a rumor, January 29, 1831. In 
February, 1831, Calhoun published a large pam- 
phlet about the whole matter. 1 The next thing 
for his enemies to do was to get his three friends, 
Ingham, Branch, and Berrien, out of the cabinet. 
To this end those who were in the secret resigned, 
as a means of breaking up the cabinet and forcing 
a reconstruction. Barry was asked to remain in 
his office. Eaton resigned first; April 7, 1831. 
Van Buren resigned April 11, 1831, in a letter 
which was so oracular that no one could understand 
it. 2 The main ideas in his letter of resignation 
and in Jackson's reply were : (1) That Jackson 
did not intend to have any one in his cabinet who 
was a candidate for the succession. This indicated 
Van Buren as such a candidate. (2) That the 
cabinet was originally a " unit," and that Jackson 
wanted to keep his cabinet a unit. This hint had 
no effect on the other secretaries. " I found in 
my first cabinet," wrote Jackson, in 1841, "des- 
semblers, & hypocrites." He suggests that Ber- 
1 40 Niles, 11. 2 40 Niles, 145. 


rien was the worst. 1 The ministers wanted to be 
dismissed) and a separate quarrel was necessary in 
the case of each. It was in this connection that 
the Peggy O'Neil affair 2 and all the old misunder- 
standing about the Seminole war came to a public 
discussion. Van Buren was appointed minister to 
England, and he went out. At the next session 
of Congress a great political conflict arose over his 
confirmation. When McLane was sent out to 
England, in 1829, he had instructions from Van 
Buren to reopen the negotiations about the West 
India trade, and, as a basis for so doing, to point 
out to the English government that the party 
which had brought that question into the position 
in which it then stood had been condemned by the 
people at the election. This introduced the inter- 
nal party contests of the country into diplomacy, 
and instead of representing this nation to foreign 
nations as a unit, having, for all its international 
relations, a continuous and consistent life, it invited 
foreigners to note party changes here, as if they 
had to negotiate at one time with one American 
nation, and at another time with another. The 
fact that Van Buren had given these instructions 
was alleged as a reason for not confirming his ap- 
pointment, but the debate took a wide range. His 
confirmation was defeated by the casting vote of 
Calhoun. This check to Jackson's plans gave just 

1 Ford MSS. 

2 Webster knew of that affair and its political bearings in 
January, 1830. 1 Correspondence, 483. 


the requisite spur of personal pique to his desire 
to make Van Buren President, and he pursued 
that purpose from this time on with all his powers. 
He was enraged at the Senate. The " Globe " 
proposed to reduce the term of senators to two 
years, and to take from the Senate the power to 
confirm appointments. 1 It was in the debate on 
Van Buren's confirmation that William L. Marcy 
cynically avowed the doctrine : " To the victors 
belong the spoils." 

Jackson found that women are the arbiters in 
certain social matters, and that men, no matter 
how great or domineering they may be, have no 
resources by which to overrule their prerogative. 
He was defeated. His interference had done only 
far greater harm to the person he had tried to be- 
friend. He gave her an unenviable, unavoidable, 
yet probably undeserved place in history. Eaton 
was in a state of ungovernable rage at the discussion 
of his wife's reputation by the newspapers from one 
end of the country to the other. He challenged 
Campbell, one of the clergymen mentioned above 
as prominent in connection with the scandal. June 
18, 1831, he challenged Ingham, Secretary of the 
Treasury. Ingham declined to fight. A few days 
later Ingham complained to Jackson that he had 
been waylaid and hindered in his duties by Eaton, 
Lewis, Randolph, and others. They denied that 
they had molested him, or had intended to do 

1 41 Niles, 444 ; an editorial exposing the folly of the complaints 
and ang-er. 


so. 1 Jackson's plan had been that Hugh L. White, 
senator from Tennessee, should resign, and that 
Eaton should take his place. White was to be 
Secretary of War. 2 White, however, who perhaps 
was piqued that he was not made Secretary of 
War in 1829, declined to fulfil his share of this 
programme. He became alienated from Jackson. 
Eaton was made Governor of Florida. From 1836 
to 1840 he was minister to Spain. Parton says 
that he quarrelled with Jackson, and was a whig 
in 1840. 3 He died in 1856. Mrs. Eaton died 
about 1878. 

The new cabinet was : Edward Livingston, of 
Louisiana, Secretary of State ; Louis McLane, of 
Delaware, Secretary of the Treasury ; Lewis Cass, 
of Michigan, Secretary of War ; Levi Woodbury, 
of New Hampshire (who had given up to Hill his 
place in the Senate), Secretary of the Navy ; Eoger 
B. Taney, of Maryland, Attorney-General. Adams 
mentions a story that the War Department was 
offered to William Drayton, leader of the Union 
party of South Carolina. 4 This cabinet was a 
" unit," and a unit for Jackson and the successor 
on whom he had determined. 

We have now brought the intimate and per- 
sonal history of Jackson's first administration 
down to the time when the campaign for his re- 
election opened. We have seen how Jackson con- 

1 40 Niles, 302. 2 Hunt's Livingston, 358. 

8 3 Parton, 368, 639. See also below, page 273. 
4 9 Adams, 132. 


strued the presidential office in its immediate bear- 
ings, and how he addressed himself to its imme- 
diate and personal duties. We turn now to the 
public questions and measures of his first admin- 



I. The trade between the United States and the 
British West Indies had been a source of irri- 
tation and dissatisfaction ever since the .United 
States had been independent. After independence 
the United States desired to obtain a commercial 
treaty which would enable them to trade with the 
British West Indies as they always had done. 
This the English resented as an effort to retain 
the benefits of being in the empire after leaving it. 
The Americans therefore employed in that trade 
the illicit methods which they had developed into a 
high art in trade with the non-British West Indies 
before the Revolution. After the second war the 
question was reopened. The English had hardly 
yet lost faith in the Navigation System, and Jjie 
Americans had adopted it as far as it would apply 
to a State with no colonies beyond the sea. As the 
diplomatic efforts for a treaty failed, resort was 
had by the United States to retaliatory measures. 
These had their inevitable effect. The two coun- 
tries, respectively, advanced step by step into a 
dead-lock, from which the only issue was that 


one side or the other must recede. This point was 
reached in 1827. The opposition in the United 
States made capital out of the entanglement. In 
the mean time the illicit trade went merrily on, 
and the smuggler rectified, in his way, the folly of 
statesmen. Thus the matter stood when Jackson 
was elected. Gallatin said that " if he had hinted 
to the Canning ministry that their course concern- 
ing the colonial trade would promote the election 
of Jackson, they would have given up the point." 1 

One of his first acts was to send McLane to - 
England to reopen negotiations. This he was to do 
by pointing to the result of the election as a rebuke 
to the former administration, which had brought 
about the dead-lock. Pending the negotiations an 
act of Congress was passed, May 29, 1830, autho- 
rizing the President to declare the retaliatory acts 
of 1818, 1820, and 1823 repealed, whenever Ameri- 
can ships should be allowed in the West Indies on 
the same terms as British ships arriving there from 
the United States, and when they should be allowed 
to carry goods from the colonies to any non-British 
ports to which British ships might go. This act was 
sent to England. Lord Aberdeen said that it was , 
all that England had ever demanded. 2 The colonial 
duties were increased, a differential duty in favor 
of the North American colonies was laid, and the 
trade was opened. The President issued his pro- 
clamation October 5, 1830. The administration 
boasted of this diplomatic achievement. The truth 
i 8 Adams, 326. 2 39 Niles, 390 et seq. 


was that the United States set out to force Eng- 
land to let American goods come into the West 
Indies on the same footing as British North Ameri- 
can goods. England was coerced by the acts of 
1818 and 1820. Canning said, in 1826, that Eng- 
land had yielded to coercion, but that she escaped 
from it as soon as she could. By way of escape she 
opened her trade to all the world. The counter- 
vailing system of the United States, then, no longer 
exercised any coercion, and the United States, to 
get the trade reopened, abandoned the demands 
with which it had started on the experiment of 
countervailing. This last step was what the Jack- 
son administration had accomplished. Niles and 
the other protectionists scoffed at the new arrange- 
ment. They said that the illicit trade was better 
than the new arrangement. 1 A proof that this 
was true is found in the fact that the illicit trade 
went on. The laws forced products of the United 
States to reach the islands through Canada and 
Nova Scotia, and this offered just so much pre- 
mium to illicit trade. 

II. The, claims of the United States for spolia- 

// tions against France and against all those states 

of Europe which had been drawn by Napoleon 

into his continental system, had been a subject of 

fruitless negotiation ever since 1815, 2 Jackson 

1 39 Niles, 298 ; 42 Niles, 148. N. Y. Advertiser in 2 Pol Eeg. 

2 For succinct statements of the origin and history of these 
claims, see the report of a minority of the committee of the 
House, 48 Niles, 6, and the article 47 Niles, 455. 


took up these claims with new energy and spirit. 
He sent W. C. Rives to France in 1829, under 
instructions which covered the whole history of 
the claims, to try to get a settlement. In his mes- 
sage of 1829, while these negotiations were pend- 
ing, Jackson referred to the claims as likely to 
" furnish a subject of unpleasant discussion and 
possible collision." This reference was not of a 
kind to help the negotiations. In 1830 a revolu- 
tion put Louis Philippe on the throne under a 
Constitution. New hopes of a settlement of the 
claims were raised by this turn in affairs. A 
treaty was finally signed at Paris, July 4, 1831, 
by which France agreed to pay twenty-five million 
francs, and the United States agreed to pay one 
and a half million francs, in final settlement of all 
outstanding claims of citizens of one country against 
the government of the other country. The treaty 
was ratified February 2, 1832. The first instal- 
ment became due February 2, 1833. Claims 
against the other states of the old continental 
league of Napoleon's time were likewise liquidated, 
and payment was secured during Jackson's ad- 
ministration. The administration derived great 
credit from these settlements. There was a great 
dealnnTire in the matter than the money. Euro- 
pean nations, which had similar claims against 
France, had secured payment soon after the peace, 
but the claims of the United States had been 
neglected. Payment now meant a concession of 
consideration and respect to the United States, and 


the people felt that Jackson had won this for the 

III. The Authority and Organization of the 
Federal Judiciary. During Adams's adminis- 
tration the Kentucky men made several attempts 
to lead the opposition party to measures favorable 
to them in their conflicts with the federal judiciary, 
arising from the " relief " acts. In the session of 
1827-28 a bill was introduced to regulate the pro- 
cedure of the federal courts in the new States, 
which had been admitted since the passage of 
the laws of September 29, 1789, and May 8, 
1792, which regulated the procedure of the federal 
courts. To this bill Rowan of Kentucky proposed 
an amendment which would take away from the 
federal courts the power to modify or change any 
of the rules of procedure, or any of the forms of 
writs of execution, which were to be those of the 
State in which the court was sitting. 1 If_jthis 
amendment had been passed, the federal courts 
would not have been allowed to change rule? and 
forms, but the State Legislatures would have had 
power to do so, and the federal judiciary would 
have been handed over to State control. This 
amendment was adopted by the Senate. Waster, 
who had been away, returned to find tkftfr- the 
whole federal judiciary system had been thrown 
into confusion 2 by this hasty proposition, which 
had been made only with reference to some of the 
whims of Kentucky relief politics. He exposed 
i Cf. page 167. 2 7 Adams, 455. 


the effects of the bill. It was recommitted and 
recast, establishing for the new States the proce- 
dure then existing, with power in the courts to 
modify, under the supervision of the Supreme 
Court, and in this shape was passed. 

In 1830 an attempt was made to repeal the 
twenty-fifth section of the judiciary act, by which 
the Supreme Court is empowered to pass upon the 
constitutionality of State laws. The bill was lost 
in the House by the vote of 137 to 51, but the 
minority consisted of some of the leading adminis- 
tration men. In 1831 the House refused, 115 to 
61, to consider a resolution instructing the judiciary 
committee to report a bill setting terms of years 
for federal judges. 1 In 1830 Berrien, the Attorney- 
General, gave an opinion on the South Carolina 
Police Act, 2 in which he overturned Wirt's opinion. 
He held that that act was valid because it was an act 
of internal police. In this opinion he laid down the 
doctrine of the extreme Southern State rights men 
about the limits of federal power. He held that 
the federal authorities ought not, in exercising their 
powers, to make laws or treaties to come into col- 
lision with anything which the States had done 
under their reserved powers, unless it was neces- 
sary to do so. The admission of black men into 
the State was only convenient, not necessary ; 
hence collision on that point would be improper. 3 

The Jackson party and the Executive Depart- 

1 39 Niles, 405. 2 See page 169. 

8 2 Opinions of the Attorneys-General, 433. 


ment were on terms of jealousy and distrust to- 
wa,rd ft the jmliniiyy fo "'""t^fll yftim? Another 
expression of these feelings was the impeachment 
of Judge Peck, of Missouri. The democrats were 
especially jealous of the prerogative powers of the 
courts ; among the rest, of the power to imprison 
for contempt. Peck wrote out and published in a 
newspaper, in 1826, a decision which he had ren- 
dered. Lawless, counsel for the defeated party, 
published a review of the opinion. Peck impris- 
oned him for twenty-four hours, and suspended 
him from practice in the court for eighteen months, 
for contempt. Lawless petitioned the federal House 
of Representatives during three sessions for redress, 
in vain. In 1829 the democratic House impeached 
Peck. Buchanan was the leader. 1 The impeach- 
ment was in the current of popular feeling, and 
there was capital to be made out of it. January 
31, 1831, the vote was, 21 to convict, 22 to acquit. 
Adams says that Jackson favored acquittal, lest 
Buchanan should gain by a conviction, just as Jef- 
ferson, in Chase's case, favored acquittal, lest John 
Randolph should gain power by a conviction. 2 By 
an act of March 2, 1831, the power of the courts 
to punish at discretion for contempt was limited 
to cases of misbehavior in court, or so near to the 
court as to obstruct the administration of justice. 

IV. The Indians. Georgia continually pressed 
the federal government to buy off the Indian title 

1 Charges and specifications, 38 Niles, 245. Cf., also, 2 Ken. 
nedy's Wirt, 308. 2 8 Adams, 306. 


to lands in that State, and it was done from time 
to time for certain portions. The treaty of 1802 
was supposed to cover Georgia's claims for the ex- 
penses of the Indian wars of 1793-94, but those 
claims were urged until 1827, when Congress voted 
$129,375 to discharge them. ' At the urgent solici- 
tation of Georgia, Monroe appointed two commis- 
sioners to treat with the Creeks, of whose lands 
nine and a half million acres were still under the 
Indian title. The lower Creeks were then on the 
land west of the Flint Kiver, and north of 31 30', 
and the upper Creeks were almost entirely in Ala- 
bama, between the Coosa Eiver and che Georgia 
boundary, and north of an east and west line 
through the Hickory Ground (Wetumpka). These 
boundaries were set by Jackson's treaty with the 
Creeks of 1814, and he guaranteed to them the 
lands which were then left to them. 1 The Chero- 
kees were in the northwestern corner of Georgia, 
the northeastern corner of Alabama, and the south- 
eastern corner of Tennessee, between the Chatta- 
hoochee, the Etowah, and the Hiwasee rivers. 2 The 
Creeks voted to put to death any one who should 
vote to sell any more land, and refused to treat 
with Monroe's coiiimissioners. After the council 
broke up, a few chiefs, headed by Mclntosh, made 
the treaty of Indian Spring, February 12, 1825, 
ceding all their lands in Georgia and Alabama 

1 Folio State Papers, 1 Indian Affairs, 827. 

2 An excellent map of the Cherokee territory in 5 Bur. Ethno- 


for 1400,000. The Senate confirmed this treaty, 
.March 3, 1825. April 30th the Creeks set Mcln- 
tosh's house on fire, and shot him as he came out. 
Governor Troup of Georgia claimed the lands 
for Georgia at once, and began to survey them. 
He also set up a lottery to dispose of them. Presi- 
dent Adams appointed an agent to investigate the 
negotiation of the treaty. The agent reported that 
forty-nine fiftieths of the Creeks repudiated the 
treaty as a fraud on them. The President ordered 
General Gaines to prevent any trespass on the lands 
of the Indians, and pointed out to Governor Troup 
the objections to his proceedings. Troup blustered, 
and asked if the President would hold himself re- 
sponsible to the State of Georgia. The Georgia 
Legislature did not sustain the Governor. The 
treaty of Indian Spring was annulled, and a new 
one was made in January, 1826, by which a part of 
the lands in Georgia were ceded. This treaty was 
not confirmed, and another, ceding all 1 the lands 
in Georgia, was finally made, as Benton says, by 
appealing to the cupidity of the chiefs. The Mcln- 
tosh party got an indemnity, and a large sum was 
given to the chiefs. Land was to be provided west 
of the Mississippi for all who would go there. 
This treaty did not satisfy the Georgians. Never- 
theless, inasmuch as by the last treaty all the lands 
in Georgia were ceded, and by the second treaty 
only part of those lands were ceded, the Georgians 
claimed a substantial victory, 2 although not all the 

1 1 Benton, 59. 2 Hodgson, 141. 


lands in Georgia and Alabama were ceded, as by 
the treaty of Indian Spring. The Cherokees still 
remained undisturbed. In January, 1828, the 
Georgia Legislature passed a set of resolutions, 
the truculency of which is unparalleled, demanding 
that the United States should extinguish the title 
of the Cherokees. 1 

The Cherokees were the most civilized of the 
Gulf Indians, and perhaps they had reached a 
higher pitch of civilization than any other Indians 
have ever yet reached. 2 They had horses and cat- 
tle, goats, sheep, and swine. They raised maize, 
cotton, tobacco, wheat, oats, and potatoes, and 
traded with their products to New Orleans. They 
had gardens, and apple and peach orchards. They 
had built roads, and they kept inns for travellers. 
They manufactured cotton and wool ; though prob- . 
ably these were very poor in their way. Their num- 
bers were increasing. In 1825 there were 13,563, Aj* \ 
besides 220 resident whites and 1,277 slaves, in the ^ 
Cherokee country. One of their number had in- Ir 
vented an alphabet for their language. They had 
a civil government, imitated from that of the 
United States. The Chickasaws had ten mills and 
fifty workshops. They lived in the northeast cor- 
ner of Mississippi. They numbered 4,000, and 
were increasing. The Choctaws, in Central Mis- 
sissippi, numbered 21,000, and ranked next to the 
Cherokees in civilization. The Creeks numbered 
40,000, and were the lowest in civilization. The 

1 3 Ann. Keg., Local History, 143. 2 3 Ann. Eeg. 77. 


money paid them for their lands had debauched 
them. The facts were that the Indians had reached 
a certain grade of civilization, that they were in- 
creasing in numbers, and that they were forming 
civilized and Christian bodies; and it was these 
very facts which made all the trouble, for they all 
led to the probability that the Indians would re- 
main a permanent part of the society, and would 
occupy definite areas of land in the midst of the 
States. It certainly was a home question, when, in 
1829, Jackson asked whether Maine or New York 
would tolerate an Indian state within her own civil 
limits. Peter B. Porter, Secretary of War under 
Adams, prepared a plan for an Indian territory 
west of the Mississippi, and for colonizing the 
Gulf Indians in it. The plan was referred to the 
next administration. Adams made himself very 
unpopular in the Southwest by his action to pro- 
tect the Indians. He did not get a vote in Georgia 
in 1828. Jackson had abundantly shown 1 that he 
held the Southwestern white man's views of In- 
dians and Indian rights. 

As soon as Jackson was elected, December 20, 
1828, Georgia passed a law extending her jurisdic- 
tion over the Cherokee lands and dividing them 
into counties, and enacted that no Indian should 
testify against a white man. In 1829 she modified 
this so that an Indian might testify against a white 
man who lived in the Indian territory. In 1829 
Alabama, and in 1830 Mississippi, passed similar 

1 See page 29. 


laws, but somewhat milder. The new administra- 
tion admitted the soundness of the theory of these 
laws, which were plainly in contravention of the 
treaties made with the Indians by the federal gov- 
ernment. In his message of 1829 Jackson said | 
that he had told the Indians that their pretensions J 
would not be supported. In the spring of 1830 
Congress passed an act for encouraging and facili- 
tating the removal of the Gulf Indians to a terri- 
tory set apart for them west of the Mississippi. 

The quarrel between Georgia and the Indians 
had now narrowed down to a struggle with the 
Cherokees, who were the most civilized, and who 
had the strongest treaty guarantees from the fed- 
eral authority for their territory and their self-gov- 
ernment. It was proposed to test" the proceedings of 
Georgia before the Supreme Court of the United 
States. In the summer of 1830, Judge Clayton, 
a Georgia State judge, charged the grand jury 
that he intended to allow no case to be withdrawn 
from his jurisdiction by any foreign authority, but 
that he should enforce the State laws about the 
Indians, and he wanted to know whether he was to 
be supported by the people. 1 The first test arose 
on a murder case against George Tassel, a Chero- 
kee, for killing another Cherokee. The Superior 
Court of Hall County tried, convicted, and sen- 
tenced him. The Chief Justice of the Supreme 
Court of the United States issued a citation to the 
State of Georgia, December 12, 1830, to appear 
i 39 Niles, 99. 


and show cause, in answer to a writ of error, why 
the sentence against Tassel should not be corrected. 1 
Governor Gilmer laid this document before the 
Legislature, which ordered him to disregard it, and 
to resist by force any attempt to interfere with the 
criminal law of the State. On the 28th of Decem- 
ber Tassel was ktmg. b^r-J 

The Governor of Georgia called on the Presi- 
dent to withdraw the federal troops, and to leave 
Georgia to deal with the Indians and gold-diggers. 
The President complied. The Georgia militia 
marched in, and complaints from the Indians at 
once began to be heard. The President refused 
to enforce the treaty rights of the Indians. The 
Cherokees applied to the Supreme Court for an 
injunction to prevent Georgia from interfering with 
their treaty rights. In January, 1831, the court, 
while in effect sustaining the claims and rights of 
the Cherokees, declared that the remedy prayed 
for could not be employed. What was needed 
was not a judicial but a political remedy. 2 The 
; political remedy belonged to the Executive and 
:the President had refused to use it. 

Georgia ordered all white residents of the Cher- 
okee country to obtain State licenses, and to take 
an oath of allegiance to the State. Two mission- 
aries, sent out by a Boston society, Worcester and 
Butler, amongst others, did not comply with this 
law. They were arrested, but were at first re- 
leased, under the belief that they were disbursing 
i 39 Niles, 338. 2 5 Peters, 1. 


agents of the federal government. The author- 
ities at Washington denied that they were such. 
Thereupon they were rearrested, tried, convicted, 
and condemned to four years' hard labor in the 
penitentiary. In sentencing them Judge Clay- 
ton made another stump speech. 1 On a writ of 
error in 1832, the Supreme Court held that the 
law under which these men were convicted was 
unconstitutional, that the laws of Georgia about 
the Cherokees contravened federal treaties and 
were void, and ordered that the men be released. 2 
Georgia refused to obey. The Georgia doctrine 
seemed to be that all three departments of the 
federal government must concur in holding a 
State law to be unconstitutional in order to set 
it aside. 3 Jackson refused to take any executive 
action to give force to the decision of the court. 
The presidential election was at hand, and he said 
that he would submit his conduct to the people, 
who could at the election show whether they ap- 
proved or disapproved of his refusal to sustain the 
decision. 4 No case could more distinctly show the 
vice of the political philosophy which Jackson pro- 
fessed. Twelve persons in all were convicted, in 
Georgia, of illegal residence in the Indian country. 

1 41 Niles, 174 2 6 Peters, 515. 8 9 Adams, 548. 

4 Greeley has a story that Jackson said, " John Marshall has 
made his decision. Now let him enforce it." 1 Greeley, 106. 
Jackson disliked Marshall, although he had no active enmity 
against him. Scarcely two men could be found less likely to ap- 
preciate each other personally or politically. 


All were pardoned. 1 The missionaries refused at 
first to accept a pardon. In January, 1833, they 
withdrew their suit in the Supreme Court, and 
were released. 2 

In 1833 Alabama came into collision with the 
federal government on account of Indians. Fed- 
eral troops were employed to expel intruders from 
the Indian territory. In executing this duty they 
killed one Owens. The State authorities attempted 
to try for murder the soldiers through whose action 
the man met his death. The military authorities 
would not consent. The federal government, taught 
by nullification, took a firmer position than in the 
case of Georgia. By a compromise, the reservation 
was made smaller, and the white intruders were 
allowed to buy titles from the Indians. 3 

In September, 1830, a treaty was negotiated at 
Dancing Rabbit Creek with the Choctaws, over 
whom Mississippi had. extended her laws, by which 
they ceded their lands and went west of the Mis- 
sissippi. They were to be provided with land, 
transportation, houses, tools, a year's subsistence, 
150,000 for schools, $20,000 a year for twenty 
years, $250 during twenty years for each one of 
four chiefs, and $500 for another, as president, 
should such an officer be chosen. When this treaty 
was before the Senate for ratification the preamble 
was stricken out, because it recited that " the Presi- 
dent of the United States has said that he cannot 

1 7 Ann. Eeg. 265. 2 43 Niles, 419. 

8 45 Niles, 155; Hodgson, 179. 


protect the Choctaw people from the operation of 
these laws" of Mississippi. 1 During the next 
eight years the tribes were all half persuaded, half 
forced, to go. The Indian Territory was roughly 
defined by an act of June 30, 1834. Part of the 
Cherokees had gone in 1818, because they wanted 
to follow their old mode of life. In 1836 all the 
rights of the Cherokees east of the Mississippi were 
bought for five million dollars and the expenses of 
removal. 2 In the same year the Creeks broke into 
hostilities, and were forced to migrate. The civil- 
ized Cherokees migrated in 1838. 

V. Public Lands. Various plans for dealing 
with the lands ha<T been proposed previous to Jack- 
son's accession. One was that^the States should 
seize the lands by virtue of their " sovereignty." 
This short and easy method recommended itself to 
the politicians of the emphatic and metaphysical 
school. It meant simply that the first settlers 
should buy some land, organize a State, and get 
sovereignty," and then take possession of the rest 
of the land within the civil jurisdiction. ^Ajoother 
plan was to sell to the States at a nominal price. 
Another: to sell all the land at graduated prices, 
for what it would bring. Another : to give the land 
to actual settlers (since realized in the homestead 

1 40 Niles, 106T~ 

2 50 Niles, 265. In 1886 there were 3,000 Indians (of whom 
2,000 were full-blood Cherokees) on a reservation of 100,000 acres, 
in their old home. (Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians vs. U. S. 
and Cherokee Nation in Sup. Ct. U. S. Ind. Comm. Rep. 

208, 404.) 


law). Another : to use the lands as a fund for 
internal jjgg^mxfiiaftBte *^deft^B (since re- 
alized in the railroad subsidies and agricultural 
_ college land grants). It is plain that if the fed- 
eral government buys territory by treaties like those 
of Louisiana and Florida, and surveys the lands, 
and maintains civil institutions over all the terri- 
tory, and then gives the lands away, what it gives 
is the outlay necessary to bring the land to the 
point where a civilized man can begin to use it. 
Of course the new States wanted population, and 
were eager that the federal government should en- 
courage immigration by making this outlay and 
giving away the product of it. To September 30, 
1832, the lands had cost 849,700,000,! and the 
total revenue received from them had amounted to 
138,300,000. The notion that the Union possessed, 
in its unoccupied lands, a great estate, or an asset 
of great value, was a delusion. It was only a 
form of the still wider social delusion that raw land 
is a " boon of nature," with which the human race, 
through its individual members, is endowed. 

The old States, especially the tariff States, then 
saw distinctly the relation of the lands to the tariff. 
Everything which enhanced the attractiveness of 
the land, and made it easier to get at it, was just 
so much force drawing the man who had no land 
and no capital away from the old States and out 
of the wages class. Every improvement in trans- 
portation ; every abolition of taxes and restrictions 

1 Round numbers ; the five right hand figures disregarded. 


like the corn laws, which, kept American agricul- 
tural products out of England, every reduction in 
the price of land, increased the chances of the 
man who had nothing to become by industry and 
economy an independent land-owner. The capi- 
talist employer in the old States was forced to 
offset this attractiveness of the land by raising 
wages. This of course is the reason why wages in 
the United States are high, and why no wages class 
has ever yet been distinctly differentiated here. It 
might justly be argued that it was improper for the 
federal government to raise funds by taxation on 
the old States, and to expend them in buying, sur- 
veying, and policing wild land, and then to give 
the land away to either " the poor " or the rich ; 
but the protectionists distinctly faced the issue 
which was raised for their pet dogma, and de- 
manded that the lands should not be surveyed and 
sold abundantly and cheaply, but should be -kept 
out of the market. The effect of this would be to 
prevent the population from spreading thinly over 
the whole continent, to make it dense in the old 
States, to raise the value and rent of land there, to 
produce a class dependent on wages, i. e., a supply 
of labor, and to keep wages down. At the same 
time all the taxes on clothing, furniture, and tools 
would reduce the net return of the agriculturist 
and lower the attractiveness of the land. Lower 
wages would then suffice to hold the laborer in the 
East. These two lines of legislation would there- 
fore be consistent and support each other ; but they 


were sorely unjust to the man who had nothing 
with which to fight the battle of life save his stout 
hands and his good-will to work. 

The free-trade States of the South and the 
free-land States of the West, therefore, fell most 
naturally into the " coalition " which the tariff men 
and national republicans denounced. The latter 
said that the Southerners had agreed to surrender 
the lands to the West as a price for the assistance 
of the West against the Eastern States and the 
tariff. 1 The sudden and unaccountable popularity 
of Jackson in rural Pennsylvania threw that State, 
in spite of the tariff interests of her capitalists, 
into the combination to which Jackson belonged 
sectionally, and the ambitious politicians of New 
York, seeing the need of joining Jackson, brought 
as much as they could of that State to his support. 
These combinations constituted the Jackson party, 
in regard to the incoherency of whose elements 
something has been said and more will appear. 
Clay was operating his political career through 
tariff and internal improvements, with the lands 
as a fund for colonization, canals, roads, and educa- 
tion. This gave him no strength in the West, and 
he could not break Jackson's phalanx in Penn- 
sylvania, where his own policy should have made 
him strong. Hence he never could consolidate a 
party. Benton antagonized Clay in the West by 
taking up the policy of free lands. 

In January and February, 1829, Illinois and 
1 9 Adams, 235. 


Indiana adopted resolutions questioning the right 
of the federal government to the lands in those 
States. They did not adopt the Georgia tone, but 
they seemed disposed to adopt the Georgia policy 
in case of a disagreement with the federal govern- 

Jackson had no settled policy in regard to landol 
InTiTs first message he favored distribution of the 
surplus revenue among the States, so soon as the 
debt should be paid. 

^December 29, 1829, Foot, of Connecticut, offered 
in the Senate a resolution that the Committee on 
Public Lands should inquire into the expediency 
of restricting sales of land to what still remained 
unsold at the minimum price, i. 6., the areas which 
up to that time had been put upon the market. 
It was in the debate on this resolution that Webster 
and Hayne became involved in their famous argu- 
ment on the theory of the confederation. Ben ton 
introduced a bill for selling the lands at graduated 
prices, so that those remaining unsold at $1.25 
should not be reserved, but sold at lower prices, 
after they had been three years on the market. 
The Senate passed this bill May 7, 1830. It was 
not acted on in the House. 

In January, 1831, the subject came up again in 
the House, on an appropriation for surveys, 1 and 
produced a long debate, in which all the views of 
the question were represented. In his annual re- 
port for 1831, McLane, Secretary of the Treasury, 
1 Q Ann. Eeg. 81. 


proposed that the lands should be sold to the 
States in which they lay at a fair price, and that 
the sum thus obtained should be divided amongst 
the States. March 22, 1832, Bibb moved, 1 in 
the Senate, that the Committee on Manufactures 
should report, as a preliminary to the consideration 
of the tariff, on the expediency of reducing the 
price of the lands, and also on the expediency of 
surrendering the lands to the States. Clay reported 
from that committee against both propositions, 
and in favor of giving ten per cent of the proceeds 
of the lands to the new States, in addition to what 
they were already entitled to, and dividing the 
residue among all the States. Clay's report was 
referred to the Committee on Public Lands, which 
reported, May 18th, adversely to his propositions, 
and recommended a minimum price of $ 1.00 ; lands 
remaining unsold at that price for five years to be 
then sold for fifty cents ; fifteen per cent of the 
proceeds to be divided amongst the new States. 
No action was taken on account of the disagreement 
of the two Houses, but the administration, by its 
attitude on the land question, gained strength in 
the Western States for the presidential election of 

^\iJj}ti r .* 1 $1 f? 7 ? rovements. Jackson, ..jnJus first 
message, indicated hostility to the general policy 
of internal improvements, and favored diattibu- 
tion. May 27, 1830, he vetoed a bill for sub- 
scription, by the United States, to the stock of the 
1 7 Ann. Reg. 57. 


Maysville and Lexington road. 1 In his veto mes- 
sage he placed himself on the constitutional doc- 
trine of Madison and Monroe. The local and po- 
litical interests which had become involved in the. 
system at this time were very numerous and very 
strong. The evil of special legislation was grow- 
ing. Politicians and interested speculators com- 
bined to further each other's interests at the 
public expense. Jackson affronted the whole in- 
terest ; one would say that he affronted it boldly, 
if it were not that he acted with such spontaneous 
will and disregard of consequences that there was 
no conscious exercise of courage. He was not able 
to put an end to the abuse, but he curtailed it. 
He used the exceptional strength of his political 
position to do what no one else would have dared to 
do, in meeting a strong and growing cause of cor- 
ruption. He held a bill for the Louisville canal, 
and another for light-houses, over the session, and 
then returned them unsigned. At the session of 
1830-31 a bill for improvements was passed by 
such majorities that a veto was useless. In 1831 
32 Jackson signed one such bill and " pocketed " 
another. In the session of 1832-33 an internal 
improvement bill was defeated by parliamentary 
tactics. In the message of 1832 Jackson recom- 
mended the sale of all the stocks held by the 
United States in canals, turnpikes, etc. He edu- 

1 This road was to run through the strongest Jackson district 
in Kentucky. (Clay to Webster. 1 Webster's Correspondence, 


catecl bis party, for that generation at least, up to 
a position of party hostility to special legislation 
of every kind. 

VII. Tariff. In 1825 Huskisson brought for- 
ward the first reforms in the system of taxation in 
England. His propositions, viewed from to-day's 
stand-point, seem beggarly enough, but at that 
time they seemed revolutionary. He reduced taxes 
on raw materials, chemicals, dye-stuffs, and mate- 
rials of industry. Haw wool was reduced from 
sixpence to a penny and a half penny per pound, 
according to quality. After the tariff of 1824 was 
passed by Congress, the English woollen producers 
exported some of their cloths to this country in 
an unfinished state, in order to get them in below 
the minimum (3SJ cents), and then had them fin- 
ished here. They also sent agents to this country, 
to whom they invoiced their cloths below the open 
market price. 

Every one of the above statements, as will be 
seen, introduces a fact which affected the relations 
of the American woollen industry, in its competi 
tion with the English woollen industry, in a way 
to counteract any protection by the tariff. A 
number of persons had begun the manufacture of 
woollens because the federal legislation encouraged 
them so to do, not because they understood that 
business, or had examined the industrial condi- 
tions of success in it. They were pleased to con- 
sider Huskisson's legislation as hostile to the 
United States, and they called for measures to 


countervail it. They also construed as fraud the 

mportation of unfinished cloths, and the practice 

if invoicing to agents at manufacturer's cost. 

The " American system," therefore, which had 

already changed its meaning two or three times, 

underwent another transformation. It now meant 

;o countervail and offset any foreign legislation, 

iven in the direction of freedom and reform, or 

advance in civilization, if that legislation favored 

;he American consumer. 

The first complaint came from the old free-trade 
ection. After 1824 the New England States, 
which up to that time had been commercial States, 
iurned to manufactures. They had resisted all 
he earlier tariffs. They would have been obliged 
;o begin manufacturing, tariff or no tariff, on ac- 
3ount of the growing density of the population ; 
>ut there was force in Webster's assertion, in re- 
ply to Hayne, that New England, after protesting 
against the tariff as long as she could, had con- 
r ormed to a policy forced upon the country by 
thers, and had embarked her capital in manufac- 
turing. 1 October 23, 1826, the Boston woollen 
manufacturers petitioned Congress for more pro- 
tection. 2 They said that they had been led, by the 
>rofits of the English woollen industry in 1824 
and the tariff of 1824, to begin manufacturing 
woollens, confident that they should not yield to 
: air competition, and that such competition would 
be secured to them by law. They went on to 
i 3 Webster's Works, 305. 2 31 Niles, 145. 


say that the English woollen manufacturers had 
glutted the market in England, and produced dis- 
tress there, which had reacted on this country. 
They said that they could not be relieved " with- 
out the aid of their national government/' 

This appeal of the woollen manufacturers 
brought out new demands from other quarters. 
Especially the wool-growers came forward. They 
had not gained anything by the tariff. A few 
shrewd men, who took to breeding sheep and who 
sold out their flocks to the farmers (who were 
eager buyers, because they were sure, since they 
had a protective tax in their favor, that they were 
to make fortunes out of wool), won by the tariff. 
No one else did. It is stated that the woollen 
manufacturers did not dare to ask for higher duties 
in 1824, because they feared that the wool-growers 
would only demand so much more. 1 They thought 
that their want of success was due to want of 
experience and skill, and they looked to make im- 
provements. In fact, the tax on wool was raised, 
in 1824, more than that on woollens. 

January 10, 1827, Mallary, of Vermont, intro- 
duced the "woollens bill," for "adjusting" the 
tariff on wool and woollens. 2 Niles had taken 
up the high tariff doctrine ten years before, and 
had preached it in his " Register " assiduously. 
His economic notions were meagre and erroneous 
throughout, and he had absolutely no training. 
He had no doubt, however, that he was inculcating 
1 2 Ann. Reg. 102. 2 31 Niles, 319. 


the rules of prosperity and wise government. He 
unquestionably exerted a great influence ; for he 
never tired of his labored prescriptions for " giving 
a circulation to money," and " encouraging indus- 
try." He took up the cause of the woollen men 
with his whole heart. Of his sincerity and dis- 
interestedness there can be no question. To him 
and the economists and statesmen of his school the 
minimum seemed to be a marvellous invention. 
Mallary proposed to use it to the utmost. He 
proposed to leave the rates of tax unchanged, but 
to apply them on and between minima of 40 cents, 
12.50, and $4.00. Cloth, therefore, which cost 41 
cents was to be held to have cost $2.50, and the 
tax on it was to be 62 J cents. Wool which cost 
over 10 cents was to be held to have cost 40 cents. 
The duty on it was to be 35 per cent for a year ; 
then 40 per cent. The principle now proposed 
was, therefore, that the duties should advance with 
time. In the tariff of 1816, they had been made 
to decline year by year. The woollens bill passed 
the House, 106 to 95. It was tabled in the Senate 
by the casting vote of Calhoun. Calhoun was 
forced into this vote by a manoauvre of Van Buren, 
who " dodged." Calhoun suffered, in consequence, 
in Pennsylvania and New York. Politics ran very 
high on this bill. In fact, they quite superseded 
all the economic interests.^ The opposition were 
afraid of offending either the Pennsylvania sup- 
porters of Jackson, or the southern supporters of 
1 31 Niles, 321 ; 33 Niles, 385. 


Jackson. Passion began now to enter into tariff 
discussion, not only on the part of the Southerners, 
but also between the wool men and the woollen 
men, each of whom thought the other grasping, 
and that each was to be defeated in their purpose 
by the other. Niles said that it was more a wool 
bill than a woollens bill, and the woollen men were 
much dissatisfied with it. 

May 14, 1827, the Pennsylvania Society for the 
Promotion of Manufactures and the Mechanic Arts 
called a convention of wool growers and manu- 
facturers. The convention met at Harrisburg, 
July 30, 1827. It was found necessary to enlarge 
the scope of the convention, in order to make allies 
of interests which would otherwise become hostile. 
The convention adopted the plan of favoring pro- 
tection on everything which asked for it. The 
result was that iron, steel, glass, wool, woollens, 
hemp, and flax were recommended for protection. 
Louisiana was not represented, and so sugar was 
left out. It was voted to discourage the importa- 
tion of foreign spirits and the distillation of spirits 
from foreign products, by way of protection to 
western whiskey. The convention proposed, as its 
idea of a reasonable and proper tax on wool and 
woollens, the following : 1 On wool which cost 8 
cents or less per pound, 20 cents per pound and an 
advance of 2J cents per pound per annum until it 
should be 50 cents ; on woollens, four minima were 
proposed, 50 cents, 12.50, 14.00, and $6.00, on 

1 32 Niles, 388. 


which the tax was to be 40 per cent for a year, 45 
per cent the next year, and 50 per cent thereafter. 
The minimum on cottons was to be raised to 40 

When the 20tl^ Congre^ met, the tariff was the 
absorbing- nnesticm r -- .Pn-nnlar interest had become 

engaged in it, and parties were to form on it, but 
it perplexed the politicians greatly. Stevenson, of 
Virginia, an anti-tariff man, was chosen Speaker. 
Adams says that Stevenson won votes by promising 
to make a committee favorable to the tariff. 1 Ste- 
venson put Mallary at the head of the committee, 
but he put an anti-tariff majority behind him. The 
" Annual Register " 2 stated the foreign trade of 
the country then as follows : Twenty-four million 
dollars' worth of cotton, rice, and tobacco were 
exported to England annually. Four million dol- 
lars' worth more were exported to other countries. 
The imports from England were seven or eight 
millions' worth of woollens, about the same value 
of cottons, three or four millions' worth of iron, 
steel, and hardware, and miscellaneous articles, 
bringing the total up to twenty-eight millions. 
From this it was plain that the producers of bread- 
stuffs in the United States, who were kept out of 
England by the corn laws, were forced to take 
their products to the West Indies and South 
America, and exchange them there for four mil- 
lions' worth of colonial produce, which England 
would receive, in order to balance the account. 
1 7 Adams, Diary, 369. 2 3 Ann. Beg. 37. 


The editor of the " Annual Eegister " built upon 
this fact his argument for protection as a retalia- 
tion to break down the English corn laws. He 
saw that the southern staple products must be the 
fulcrum for the lever by which the English restric- 
tions were to be broken. He offered the South- 
erners a certain consolation in the hope that there 
would be a larger consumption of their staples at 
home, but really concluded that, as between in- 
terests, the grain interest of the North and West 
was worth more than the interests of the South. 
It is not strange if this mode of reasoning was not 
relished in the South. 1 

Mallary stated in debate that the consumption 
of woollens in the United States was then seventy- 
two million dollars per annum, of which ten mil- 
lions' worth were imported, twenty-two millions' 
worth were manufactured in the United States, and 
forty millions' worth were produced by household 
spinning and weaving (" domestic industry," as the 
term was then used). If these statistics are worth 
anything, the twelve millions of population con- 
sumed, on an average, six dollars' worth of woollens 
per head per annum. What Mallary proposed to 
do was to prevent the ten millions' worth from 
being imported. To do this he would increase the 
cost of the part imported and the part manufac- 
tured at home, the result of which would be that 
still a larger part of the population would have to 
be clothed in homespun. Thus his project might 
1 See page 248. 


easily defeat itself, so far as it aimed to benefit the 
American manufacturer, and it would deprive the 
American people of the rest, leisure, and greater 
satisfaction, as well as abundance, which new ma- 
chinery and the factory system were winning out 
of the textile industries, as compared with the old 
household spinning and weaving. 

The Committee on Manufactures of the House 
had been taking testimony on the tariff during the 
recess. The southern free-traders had brought 
this about against the opposition of the northern 
protectionists. There were only twenty-eight wit- 
nesses examined, of whom nine were voluntary 
and seven were members of Congress. The evi- 
dence amounted to nothing but complaints of hard 
times and losses. 1 The deduction that these facts 
were due to a lack of sufficient tariff was taken 
for granted. 2 

Silas Wright and other anti-tariff men on the 
Committee on Manufactures would not let Mallary 
report the propositions of the Harrisburg conven- 
tion on wool and woollens. 3 Mallary tried to intro- 
duce those propositions as amendments on the floor 
of the House. All the interests, industrial and 

1 34 Niles, 1. 

2 As a specimen of the value of such complaints: In April, 
1828, Niles said that there was dullness in trade and great distress 
at Baltimore. 34 Niles, 139. In October he said that he had 
not been through parts of the city for a long time, and that on a 
recent walk he had been astonished at the signs of prosperity. 
85 Niles, 81. 

8 Hammond's Wright, 104. 


political, pounced upon the bill to try to amend it 
to their notions. New England and the Adams 
men wanted high duties on woollens and cottons, 
and low duties on wool, iron, hemp, salt, and mo- 
lasses (the raw material of rum). Pennsylvania, 
Ohio, and Kentucky wanted high taxes on iron, 
wool, hemp, molasses (protection to whiskey), and 
low taxes on woollens and cottons. The South- 
erners wanted low taxes on everything, but espe- 
cially on finished goods, and if there were to be 
heavy taxes on these latter they did not care how 
heavy the taxes on the raw materials were made. 
This last point, and the unswerving loyalty of 
rural Pennsylvania to Jackson, enabled the Jack- 
son party to hold together its discordant elements. 
The political and economic alliances of the South 
were plainly inconsistent. 1 

The act, which resulted from the scramble of sel- 
fish special interests, was an economic monstrosity. 
The industrial interests of twelve millions of people 
had been thrown into an arena where there was 
little knowledge of economic principles, and no 
information about the industrial state of the coun- 
try, or about the special industries. It being as- 
sumed that the Legislature could, would, and was 
about to, confer favors and advantages, there was 
a scramble to see who should get the most. At the 
same time party ambitions and strifes seized upon 
the industrial interests as capital for President- 
making. May 19, 1828, the bill became a law. 

1 See page 250. 

TARIFF OF 1828 245 

The duty on wool costing less than 10 cents per 
pound was 15 per cent, on other wool 20 per cent 
and 30 per cent. That on woollens was 40 per 
cent for a year, then 45 per cent, there being four 
minima, 50 cents, $1.00, $2.50, $4.00. All which 
cost over $4.00 were to be taxed 45 per cent for a 
year, then 50 per cent. Niles and all the woollen 
men were enraged at this arrangement. No South 
Carolinian was more discontented than they. The 
" dollar minimum " was the especial cause of their 
rage. Cloth which cost 51 cents they wanted to 
regard as costing $2.50, and to tax it 40 per cent 
on that, i. e., $1.00. The dollar minimum let in 
a large class of cloths which cost from $1.00 to 
$1.25, and which could be run down to cost from 
90 to 99 cents. 

The process of rolling iron had not yet been intro- 
duced into this country. It was argued that rolled 
iron was not as good as forged, and this was made 
the ground for raising the tax on rolled iron from 
$30.00 to $37.00 per ton, while the tax on forged 
iron was raised from $18.00 to $22.40. Kolled 
iron was cheaper, and was available for a great 
number of uses. The tax, in this case, " counter- 
vailed " an improvement in the arts, and robbed 
the American people of their share in the advan- 
tage of a new industrial achievement. The tax on 
steel was raised from $20.00 to $30.0Q. per ton ; that 
on hemp from $35.00 to $45.00 per ton ; that on 
molasses from 5 cents to 10 cents per gallon ; that 
on flax from nothing to $35.00 per ton. The taxes 


on sugar, salt, and glass remained unchanged, as 
did that on tea also, save by a differential tonnage 
duty. Coffee was classified and the tax reduced. 
The tax on wine, by a separate act, was reduced 
one half or more. 1 

This was the " tariff of abominations," so called 
on account o'F"ffle numoer of 'especially monstrous 
provisions which it contained. In the course of 
the debate on it, foajjopmi^ was frpply used that 
protective taxes lower prices, and the exclusion of 
American grain by the English corn laws was a 
constantly effective argument. Credit varying 
from nine to eighteen months was allowed undei 
this as under the previous tariffs. 

VIII. Nullification. The Southerners bitterly 
denounced the tariff of 1828. They had already 
begun to complain of the operation of the system 
four or five years before. To understand their 
complaint, it is enough to notice with what reckless 
extravagance the tariff theory, even if its truth 
were admitted, was being handled in 1828. Of 
course the public argument in favor of the tariff 
necessarily took the form of assertions that, by 
some occult process or other, the taxation proposed 
would be beneficent to all, and that the protective 
theory was a theory of national wealth. The 
Southerners were sure that they paid the expenses 
of the experiment, and they ventured the inference 
that those who were so eager for the tariff saw 
their profit in it ; but when the attempt was made 
1 See page 402. 


to find any compensation to the nation or to the 
South, no such thing could be found. Up to that 
point there was the plain fact of capital expended 
and capital gained ; at that point all turned into 
dogma and declamation. 

March 12, 1828, McDuffie, of South Carolina, 
presented a report from the Committee on Ways 
and Means 1 against the tariff. He enumerated 
the varieties of woollens used by the people, and 
showed the operation of the minima upon each. 
He then went on to discuss the economic doctrines 
and the theory of protection as a mode of increas- 
ing the wealth of the country, and more especially 
the effect of the proposed taxes on the agricultural 
and exporting sections. The facts and doctrines 
stated by him were unanswerable, but they did not 
touch either the political motives or the interested 
pecuniary motives which were really pushing the 
tariff. He had all the right and all the reason, 
but not the power. The agricultural States were 
forced, under the tariff, either to export their pro- 
ducts, exchange them for foreign products, and pay 
taxes on these latter to the federal treasury before 
they could bring them home, or else to exchange 
their products with the northern manufacturers 
for manufactured products, and to pay taxes to the 
latter in the price of the goods. All the mysteries 
of exchange, banking, and brokerage might ob- 
scure, they never could alter, these actual economic 
relations of fact. 

i 34 NUes, 81. 


The protectionists always affected to -deride the 
southern declaration that the tax fell on the South. 
The popular notion was that the tariff tax bore on 
the foreigner in some way or other, and helped the 
domestic producer to a victory over the foreigner. 
Since the object of the tariff was to prevent im- 
portations of foreign goods, it would, if it suc- 
ceeded, make the foreigner stay at home, and keep 
his goods there. This of course deprived him of 
a certain demand for his goods, and prevented him 
from reaching a gain which, under other condi- 
tions, he might have won, but it could not possibly 
render him or his capital in any way available 
for " encouraging American manufactures." The 
American consumer of American products is the 
only person whom American laws could reach in 
order to make him contribute capital to build up 
American industry. So far, then, as the American 
protected industries were concerned, they preyed 
upon each other with such results of net gain and 
loss as chance and stupidity might bring about. 
So far as American non-protected industries were 
concerned, they, being the naturally strong and 
independent industries of the country, sustained 
the whole body of protected industries, which 
were simply parasites upon them. The protective 
theory, as a theory of wealth, therefore proposed 
to organize national industry as an independent 
body with a parasite upon it, while the free-trade 
theory proposed to let industry organize itself as 
so many independent and vigorous bodies as the 


labor, capital, and land of the country could sup- 

The grievance of the South in 1828 is undenia- 
ble. So long as the exports of the country were 
almost exclusively southern products cotton and 
tobacco and so long as the federal revenue was 
almost entirely derived from duties on imports, it 
is certain that the southern industries either sup- 
ported the federal government or paid tribute to 
the northern manufacturers. The Southerners 
could not even get a hearing or patient and proper 
study of the economic questions at issue. Their in- 
terests were being sacrificed to pretended national 
interests, just as, under the embargo, the interests 
of New England were sacrificed to national inter- 
ests. In each case the party which considered its 
interests sacrificed came to regard the Union only 
as a cage, in which all were held in order that the 
stronger combination might plunder the weaker. 
In each case the party which was in power, and 
was having its way, refused to heed any remon- 
strance ; in fact regarded remonstrance as rebellion. 

The more thoroughly the economist and the 
political philosopher recognizes the grievance of the 
Southerners in 1828, the more he must regret the 
unwisdom of the southern proceedings. The oppo- 
nents of the tariff of 1828 adopted the policy of 
voting in favor of all the " abominations " on points 
of detail, in the hope that they could so weight 
down the bill that it would at last fail as a whole. 1 
1 35 NUes, 52. 


Hence those Southerners who supported Jackson 
voted with the Pennsylvania and New York high- 
tariff men for all the worst features of the bill, 
while New England and the Adams men, who 
started as high-tariff men, voted on the other side. 
The southern Jackson men wanted to give way 
sufficiently on the tariff to secure one or two 
doubtful States. For instance, they were willing 
to protect whiskey and hemp to win Kentucky 
from Clay to Jackson. They were, in fact, play- 
ing a game which was far too delicate, between 
their economic interests and their political party 
affiliations. They were caught at last. In the 
vote on the previous question in the House, the 
yeas were 110, of whom 11 were Adams men and 
99 Jackson men ; the nays were 91, of whom 80 
were Adams men and 11 Jackson men. The nays 
were those who wanted a tariff, but who wanted to 
amend the bill before them a great deal more be- ' 
fore they passed it ; that is, they wanted to take 
out the abominations which the anti-tariff men had 
voted into it. On the final passage of the bill, the 
yeas were 105, of whom 61 were Adams men and 
44 Jackson men ; the nays were 94, of whom 35 
were Adams men and 59 were Jackson men. Of 
the yeas only 3 were from south of the Potomac. 
The policy of the southern free-traders, like most 
attempts at legislative finesse, proved an entire 
failure. The high-tariff men, although every man 
had intense objection to something in the bill, 
voted for it rather than defeat the bill entirely. 


The New England men did not know how to vote. 
In the end 23 of them voted against the bill and 
16 for it. 1 The bill passed the Senate, 26 to 21. 
Webster did not know on May 7th how he should 
vote. 2 He voted for it, and then went home and 
defended the vote on the ground that he had to 
take the good and evil of the measure together. 3 
After all, the tariff made no capital for anybody. 
The protectionists, by threatening both parties, 
forced both to concede the tariff, after which the 
protectionists voted with either party, according to 
their preferences, just as they would have done if 
both had resisted instead of both yielding. 

Van Buren obtained "instructions" from Albany 
to vote for the tariff, in order to be able to do so 
without offending the Southerners. 4 Calhoun de- 
clared, in a speech in the Senate, February 23, 
1837, that Van Buren was to blame for the tariff 
of 1828. 5 

The South had already begun to discuss reme- 
dies before the tariff of 1828 was passed. Colonel 
Hamilton, of South Carolina, at a public dinner in 
the autumn of 1827, proposed " nullification " as a 
remedy, the term being borrowed from the Vir- 
ginia and Kentucky resolutions of 1798. Those 

1 35 Niles, 52. 2 7 Adams, 534. 3 1 Webster's Works, 165. 

* Mackenzie, 103 ; Hammond's Wright, 105. 

5 Green's Telegraph Extra, 271, says that Adams wanted to 
veto the tariff of 1828, and throw himself on the South, uniting 
with Calhoun, but that Clay would not let him do so, because that 
would ruin him and the American system. This is a very doubt- 
ful story. 


resolutions now came to have, for a certain party 
in the South, the character and authority of an ad- 
dendum to the Constitution. They were, in truth, 
only the manifesto of a rancorous opposition, like 
the resolutions of the Hartford convention. Yet, 
at that time, to call a man a " federalist " would 
have been a graver insult throughout the South 
than it would be now, in the North, to call a man 
a secessionist. 

An examination of the resolutions of 1798, as 
they were adopted, will fail to find nullification in 
them. The resolutions, with a number of other 
most interesting documents connected therewith, 
are given by Niles in a supplement to his 43d vol- 
ume. By examination of these it appears that 
Jefferson's original draft of the Kentucky resolu- 
tions contained, in the eighth resolution, these 
words : " Where powers are assumed which have 
not been delegated, a nullification of the act is 
the right remedy." The Legislature of Ken- 
tucky cut out this and nearly all the rest of the 
eighth resolution. The executory resolution, as 
drawn by Jefferson, ended thus : " The co-States 
[he means those States which by adopting these 
resolutions agree to cooperate] . . . will concur in 
declaring these acts [the alien and sedition laws] 
void and of no force, and will each take measures 
of its own for providing that neither of these acts 
. . . shall be exercised within their respective ter- 
ritories." Here, instead of an undefined term, we 
have a specific programme, which shows, without 


ambiguity, what the term meant. Different States, 
while remaining in the Union, were to prohibit 
validity within their territories, each to such fed- 
eral acts as it disapproved, speaking through its 
constituted authorities. The Legislature struck 
this out, and adopted, as the executory resolution : 
" The co-States . . . will concur in declaring these 
[acts] void and of no force, and will each unite 
with this commonwealth in requesting their repeal 
at the next session of Congress." Some of the 
other States responded to these resolutions, and in 
1799 Kentucky passed a resolution in which oc- 
curs this statement : " A nullification by those sov- 
ereignties of all unauthorized acts done under color 
of that instrument [the Constitution] is the rightful 
remedy." Madison's Virginia resolutions do not 
contain nullification either in form or substance, 
least of all as a practical remedy. They declared 
the alien and sedition acts unconstitutional, and 
that " the necessary and proper measures will be 
taken by each [of the concurring States] for co- 
operating with this State " to preserve the reserved 
rights of the States and people. In 1799 Madison 
made a long report to the Virginia House of Del- 
egates, in which he analyzed and defended the 
resolutions of 1T98, and especially defended the 
remedy proposed, namely, a solemn resolution and 
protest, communicated to the other States. He 
construed this remedy strictly. In May, 1830, 
Madison wrote to Livingston, approving of an 
anti-nullification speech made by him on March 


15th of that year. He thus states the error of the 
nullifiers : " The error in the late comments on the 
Virginia proceedings has arisen from a failure to 
distinguish between what is declaratory of opinion 
and what is ipso facto executory ; between the 
rights of the parties and of a single party ; aiid^ 
between resorts within the purview of the Consti- 
tution and the ultima ratio which appeals from 
a Constitution, cancelled by its abuses, to original 
rights, paramount to all Constitutions." In 1830 
Madison also wrote two long letters, one to Edward 
Everett, the other to Andrew Stevenson, in which he 
interpreted the Virginia resolutions. He certainly 
softens them down somewhat, which is a proof that 
party heat influenced him when he wrote them. 
He lays especial stress on the limited and harmless 
nature of the proposed action of Virginia. His 
two letters are the best statement of " Madisonian 

It is certain that the nullification of a federal 
law in a State, by a State authority, as a practical 
and available remedy against an offensive measure, 
found no sanction in 1798-99, except in the sup- 
plementary resolution of Kentucky, when the heat 
of the controversy favored an extreme position. 
It was a notion of Jefferson, in which Madison did 
not join, and which neither Legislature adopted, 
except as stated. Never until 1827 was any body 
of men found to take up the notion, and try 
to handle it as reasonable and practical. Nulli- 
fication is jacobinism. It is revolution made a 


constant political means, and brought into the 
every-day business of civil life. Nothing is more 
astonishing in American political history than 
the immunity enjoyed by some men, and the un- 
fair responsibility enforced against others. Every 
school-boy is taught to execrate the alien and sedi- 
tion laws, and John Adams bears the odium of 
them, but no responsibility worth speaking of for 
nullification attaches to Jefferson. He was the 
father of it, and the sponsor of it, and the authority 
of his name was what recommended it in 1827. 

In^December, 1827, the South Carolina Legisla- 
ture raTsedacolmjQiitteeoii the powers of the federal 
government in regard to tariff. In the winter 
of 1827-28 the Legislatures of several 'southern 
States passed resolutions about protective tariff 
legislation. South Carolina had been a federal 
State in the previous generation. She had not 
been opposed to the federal government save in 
the matter of her " police bill." Georgia had been 
the turbulent State, the one which had had the 
most frequent collisions with the federal govern- 
ment, and had behaved on those occasions with 
violence and folly. South Carolina in Monroe's 
time was latitudinarian and anti-radical, and as 
such was opposed to Georgia. ^ith_aEoliua 
now declared the tariff, internal improvements, 
and appropriations for the colonization society un- 
constitutional. 1 Georgia declared the tariff and 
internal improvements unconstitutional ; declared 
" 154. 


that Georgia would not submit to the action of 
Congress, and affirmed the right of secession. 1 
The old Crawford party, however, took sides 
against nullification, and prevented Georgia from 
ranging herself with South Carolina. At a meet- 
ing at Athens, August 6, 1828, presided over by 
Crawford, a committee, consisting of Wayne, Ber- 
rien, Cobb, Gilmer, Clayton, Troup, and others, 
reported an address and resolutions denouncing 
the tariff, but disclaiming all disunion sentiments 
or purposes, and favoring 2 constitutional remedies. 
In 1832 Crawford advocated a theory that secession 
was wrong until after a convention to amend the 
Constitution had been tried and proved a failure. 3 
North Carolina protested, in 1828, against the 
new tariff, declaring that it violated the spirit of 
the Constitution and opposed the interests of that 
State. Alabama denied the constitutionality of 
the tariff, and denounced it as pillage of that 

The proceedings of South Carolina did not 
remedy the matter at all ; but they altered the 
issue very much to the satisfaction of the protec- 
tionists. The Union and the supremacy of the law 
were something on which a much better fight could 
be made than on the tariff, and the protectionists, 
having secured the law, wanted nothing better 
than to draw away attention from the criticism of 
it by making the fight on nullification. Calhoun 
and the South Carolinians had changed the fighting 

1 3 Ann. Eeg. 64. 2 35 Niles, 14. 8 42 NUes, 389. 


from free-trade to nullification, and on that they 
stood alone. They threw away a splendid chance 
to secure a sound policy on one of the first economic 
interests of the country. In the debate between 
Webster and Hayne the latter won a complete 
victory on tariff and land. Webster made the 
fighting on the constitutional question, and turned 
away from the other questions almost entirely. 
He had no standing ground on tariff and land. 
He was on record in his earliest speeches as an 
intelligent free-trader, and his 'biographer 1 , has 
infinite and fruitless trouble to try to explain away 
the fact. When Hayne opened the constitutional 
question, he gave Webster every chance of victory. 
The action of Congress in passing the tariff of 
1828, in spite of the attitude of the South, seemed 
to the Southerners to indicate an insolent disregard 
of their expostulations. In the winter of 182829 
the South Carolina Legislature sent to the Senate 
an " Exposition and Protest " against the new law. 
Georgia wanted to nullify both Indian legislation 
and tariff. Virginia adopted the principle of nulli- 
fication. North Carolina denounced the tariff, but 
nullification also. Alabama denounced the tariff, 
but recognized the right of Congress to levy re- 
venue duties, with incidental protective effect. In 
1829 Alabama went nearer to nullification. This 
was the high water mark of nullification outside o 
South Carolina. All these States were taunted, 
in answer to their remonstrances, with the votes of 

1 1 Curtis's Webster, 207 et seq. 


the Southern members on the details of the tariff 
of abominations. 

Neither party could let the tariff rest. A high 
tariff is in a state of unstable equilibrium. If 
legislators could ever gain full and accurate know- 
ledge of all the circumstances and relations of 
trade in their own country, and in all countries 
with which it trades ; if they had sufficient wit to 
establish an artificial tax system which should just 
fit the complicated facts, and produce the results 
they want withoiit doing any harm to anybody's 
interests; and if, furthermore, the circumstances 
and relations of trade would remain unchanged, it 
would be possible to make a permanent and stable 
tariff. Each of these conditions is as monstrously 
impossible as anything in economics can be. Hence 
constant new efforts are necessary, as well to suit 
those to whom the tariff does not yet bring what 
they expected from it, as to silence those who are 
oppressed by it. The persons .whose interests 
were violated by the tariff of 1828 tried every 
means in their powejr to evade it. January 27, 
1830, Mallary brought in a bill to render the cus- 
tom house appraisal more stringent and effective. 
McDuffie responded with a proposition to reduce 
all taxes on woollens, cottons, iron, hemp, flax, 
molasses, and indigo to what they were before the 
tariff of 1824 was passed. The whole subject was 
reopened. McDuffie's bill was defeated, and Mal- 
lary r s was passed. By separate bills the taxes on 
salt, molasses, coffee, cocoa, and tea were reduced. 


Ly April, 1880, x came Jackson^s Union toast. 1 
It was a great disappointment to the mass of the 
Southerners, who had been his ardent supporters, 
and who had hoped, from his action in regard to 
Georgia and the Indians, that he would let the 
powers of the federal government go by default in 
the case of the tariff also. 2 The personal element, 
which always had such strong influence with Jack- 
son, had become more or less involved in the nulli- 
fication struggle with which Calhoun was identi- 

" I was aware of the hostility of the influential charac- 
ter aluded to [Calhoun] I sincerely regret the course 
taken by Hamilton & Hayne The people of South 
Carolina will not, nay cannot sustain such nulifying Doc- 
trines. They Carolinians are a patriotic & highminded 
people, and they prize their liberty too high to jeopard- 
ize it, at the shrine of an ambitious Demagogue, whether 
a native of Carolina or of any other country This 
influential character in this heat, has led Hamilton & 
Hayne astray, and it will, I fear, lead to the injury of 
Hamilton & loose him his election But the ambitious 
Demagogue aluded to, would sacrifice friends & country, 
& move heaven & earth, if he had the power, to gratify 
his unholy ambition His course will prostrate him 
here as well as every where else Our friend M r 
Grundy says he will abandon him unless he can satisfy 
him that he has used his influence to put down this 
nulifying doctrine, which threatens to desolve our happy 

1 See page 203. 2 Hodgson, 166-7. 

3 Jackson to Lewis, Aug. 25, 1830, from Franklin, Tenn. Ford 



The Georgia case involved only indirectly the 
authority and prestige of the federal government. 
The immediate parties in interest were the In- 
dians. Nullification involved directly the power 
and prestige of the federal government, and he 
would certainly be a most exceptional person who, 
being President of the United States, would allow 
the government of which he was the head to be 
defied and insulted. 

On the 22d of November, 1830, a bill for a 
State convention failed to get a two thirds vote 
in the South Carolina Legislature. An attempt 
was then made to test the constitutionality of the 
tariff in the courts by refusing to pay duty bonds, 
and pleading " no consideration " for the taxes 
levied ; but the United States District Court, in 
1831, refused to hear evidence of " no considera- 
tion," drawn from the character of the tariff of 
1828. 1 

June 14, 1831, Jackson wrote a letter to a com- 
mittee of citizens of Charleston, in answer to an 
invitation to attend the celebration of the Fourth 
of July at that city, in which he indicated that 
a policy of force would be necessary and proper 
against nullification. The Governor of the State 
brought this letter to the notice of the Legislature, 
which adopted resolutions denouncing the act of 
the President in writing such a letter, and denying 
the lawfulness of the steps which he described. 
There were some in South Carolina who, at this 
1 7 Ann. Reg. 260. 


time, favored secession, so soon as South Carolina 
could organize a sufficient combination to go out 
with her. Cheves was a leader of such. 1 

North Carolina now denounced nullification, but 
the other States as yet held back. 

On the 5th of October, 1831, a free-trade con- 
vention met at Philadelphia. On the 26th of 
October a protectionist convention met at New 
York. Gallatin wrote the address published by 
the former. Of course it was all free trade, no 
nullification. A. H. Everett wrote the address 
issued by the New York convention. The public 
debt was being paid off with great rapidity, and 
the need for revenue was all the time declining. 
The free-traders said : In that case, let us abolish 
the taxes, and not raise a revenue which we do not 
need. It will be an additional advantage that we 
can do away, without any complicated devices, 
with all the protective taxes which one citizen pays 
to another, and which take shelter under the reve- 
nue taxes. Let the people keep and use their own 
earnings. The protectionists wanted to remove 
the taxes from all commodities the like of which 
were not produced here. They argued that, if the 
country was out of debt, it could afford to enter on 
great schemes of national development by govern- 
ment expenditure. They therefore proposed to 
keep up the taxes for protective purposes, and to 
spend the surplus revenue (in which they regarded 
the revenue from land as a thing by itself) on in- 

1 8 Adams, Diary, 410. 


ternal improvements, pensions, French spoliation 
claims, etc. These were not yet strictly party posi- 
tions, but in general the former was the adminis- 
tration policy and the latter the opposition policy. 

The session of 1831-32 was full of tariff. A 
presidential election was again at hand. J. Q. 
Adams was put at the head of the Committee on 
Manufactures with an anti-tariff majority. Mc- 
Duffie was chairman of the Committee on Ways 
and Means. January 19, 1832, the House in- 
structed the Secretary of the Treasury to collect 
information about manufactures. A report was 
rendered in two large volumes, in 1833, after the 
whole subject had been disposed of. Clay was 
nominated for President in December, 1831, and 
was preparing his policy and programme. A con- 
ference was held at Washington by his supporters, 
at which he presented his views, as it appears, in a 
somewhat dictatorial manner. 1 He wanted all the 
revenue taxes (on tea, coffee, wine, etc.) abolished. 
The protective taxes he wanted to make prohibi- 
tory, so as to stop revenue. He said that the du- 
ties on hemp were useless, as our dew-rotted hemp 
never could compete with the water-rotted hemp 
which was imported. This was rather hard, con- 
sidering that the tax on hemp had been laid for 
the sake of Kentucky, and now the member from 
Kentucky and father of the "American system" 
said that protection to hemp was useless. Clay 
was willing to allow a drawback on rigging ex- 

1 8 Adams, Diary, 445. 

TARIFF OF 1832 263 

ported. Dearborn said that the tax on hemp had 
closed every rope-walk in Boston. Adams said 
that the House Committee on Manufactures would 
reduce the duties prospectively ; that is, to take 
effect when the debt should be paid. Clay wanted 
to stop paying the debt in order to take away the 
administration " cry." Adams took sides with 
Jackson on the point of paying the debt. He 
thought public opinion favored that policy. He 
also thought Clay's programme would appear like 
defying the South. Clay said that he did not care 
whom he defied. " To preserve, maintain, and 
strengthen the American system he would defy 
the South, the President, and the Devil." We 
may say what we like of the nullifiers, but, so far 
as they met with and knew of this disposition on 
the part of Clay and his supporters, they would 
not have been free men if they had not resisted it ; 
for it must not be forgotten that the real question 
at issue was whether their property should be 
taken away from them or not. 

In the annual message for 1831 Jackson recom- 
mended that the tariff be amended so as to recjuce 
revenue. February 8, 1832, McDuffie reported 
a bill making the taxes on iron, steel, sugar, salt, 
hemp, flour, woollens, cottons, and manufactures 
of iron twenty-five per cent for a year after June 
30, 1832, then eighteen and three fourths per cent 
for a year, and then twelve and one half per cent 
for an indefinite period. All other goods which 
were taxed over twelve and one half per cent at 


the time of passing the bill were to be taxed 
twelve and one half per cent after June 30, 1832. 
April 27, 1832, the Secretary of the Treasury 
(McLane) presented a tariff bill in answer to a call 
by the House. It was planned to raise twelve mil- 
lions of revenue. It was proposed to collect fifteen 
per cent on imports in general, with especial and 
higher rates on the great protected commodities. 
This was the administration plan. The House 
Committee on Manufactures reported a bill May 
23, which was taken up instead of the others. 
The battle reopened, and ranged over the whole 
field of politics and political economy. The act, as 
finally passed (July 14, 1832), reduced or abolished 
many of the revenue taxes. It did not materially 
alter the protective taxes. The tax on iron was 
reduced, that on cottons was unchanged, that on 
woollens was raised to fifty per cent ; wool costing 
less than eight cents per pound was made free, 
other wool was taxed as before. Woollen yarn 
was now first taxed. This was the position of 
tariff and nullification when the presidential elec- 
tion was held. 

IX. ^ationalJE&jik. In the United States the 
democratic element in public opinion has always 
been jealous of and hostile to the money power. 
The hostility has broken out at different times in 
different ways, as an assault on banks, corpora- 
tions, vested rights, and public credit. Sometimes 
it seems as if the " money power " were regarded 
superstitiously, as if it were a superhuman entity, 


with will and power. The assaults on it are min- 
gled with dread, as of an enemy with whom one 
is not yet ready to cope, but whose power is in- 
creasing rapidly, so that the chance of ultimate 
victory over him is small. This antagonism is but 
a premonition of the conflict between democracy 
and plutocracy, which is the next great crisis which 
the human race has to meet. We are now to study 
one of the greatest struggles between democracy 
and the money power. 

After a renewal of the charter of the first Bank 
of the United States had been refused, in 1812, 
a great number of local banks were organized, 
especially in the Middle States. This movement 
unfortunately coincided with the second war with 
England. The combination of bank mania and war 
financiering produced a very extravagant bank- 
note inflation. The party in power was forced 
to imitate measure after measure of Hamilton's 
financial system, which they had so vigorously de- 
nounced twenty years before. At last they came 
to a national bank also. The Senate wanted to 
make a Bank to suit the administration, that is, 
one which could make loans to the Treasury ; one, 
therefore, which was not bound to pay specie. The 
House strenuously resisted the creation of such a 
mere paper-money machine. Madison vetoed, in 
January, 1815, a bill which had been passed in 
conformity with the ideas of the House. Another 
bill was introduced at once, which provided for a 
bank to conform to the wishes of the administra- 


tion. This bill was before the House on the day 
on which news of the treaty of Ghent was received 
at Washington (February 13). Pitkin says that 
the news was received at the moment of voting. 1 
JThe bill was laid aside and was never revived. 

At the next session (1815-16) the proposition 
came up for a national bank, not as a financial 
resource for the Treasury, but to check the local 
banks and force a return to specie payments. The 
charter became a law April 10, 1816. It was a 
close imitation of Hamilton's Bank. In this Bank 
also the government had a big stock note for seven 
millions of dollars of stock, which it had sub- 
scribed for as a resource to pay its debts, not as 
investment for free capital. The Bank was char- 
tered for twenty years. Its capital was thirty-five 
millions, seven subscribed by the United States in 
a five per cent stock note, seven by the public in 
specie, and twenty-one by the public in United 
States stocks. It was to pay a bonus of one and 
one half millions in two, three, and four years. It 
was not to issue notes under $5.00, and not to sus- 
pend specie payments under a penalty of twelve 
per cent on all notes not redeemed on presenta- 
tion. Twenty directors were to be elected annually 
by the stockholders, and five, being stockholders, 
were to be appointed by the President of the 
United States and confirmed by the Senate. The 
federal government was to charter no other bank 
during the period of the charter of this. The 
1 Pitkin, 427. 


Secretary of the Treasury might at any time re- 
deem the stocks in the capital of the Bank, in- 
cluding the five per cent subscription stock. He 
might remove the public deposits if he should see 
fit, but must state his reasons for so doing to Con- 
gress at its next meeting. The Bank engaged to 
transfer public funds without charge. At first it 
undertook to equalize the currency by receiving 
any notes of any branch at any branch, but it 
was soon forced to abandon the attempt. The old 
Bank had never done this. 1 Two things were 
mixed up in this attempt : (1) The equalization of 
the different degrees of depreciation existing in the 
bank-notes of different districts. This the Bank 
could not have corrected save by relentlessly pre- 
senting all local notes for redemption, until they 
were made equal to specie or were withdrawn. So 
far as the Bank did this, it won the reputation of 
a " monster " which was crushing out the local 
banks. 1 (2) The equalization of the domestic ex- 
changes. This was impossible and undesirable, 
since capital never could be distributed in exact 
proportion to local needs for it. The failure of 
the Bank to " equalize the exchanges," and its re- 
fusal to take any notes at any branch, earned it 
more popular condemnation than anything else. 

The Bank charter contained a great many faults. 

To mention only those which affected its career : 

The capital was too large. There ^as no reason 

for lending its capital to the government, i. e. 9 

1 Carey's Letters, 55. * See page 156. 


putting it into public stocks, or making the Bank 
a syndicate of bond-holders. There was every rea- 
son why the United States should not hold stock 
in it, especially when it could not pay for the same. 
The dividends of the bank from 1816 to 1831, 
when the government paid its stock note, averaged 
five per cent per annum, paid semi-annually. The 
United States paid five per cent on its stock note 
quarterly. This gave room for another complaint 
by the enemies of the Bank. 

The Bank was established at Philadelphia. It 
began with nineteen branches, and grew to twenty- 
five. Specie payments were resumed nominally 
February 20, 1817, after which date, according to 
a joint resolution of Congress of April 16, 1816, 
the Treasury ought to receive only specie, or notes 
of the Bank of the United States, or of specie- 
paying banks, or Treasury notes. Jn the first two 
'years of its existence the great Bank was carried 
\to the verge of bankruptcy by as bad banking as 
ever was heard of. Instead of checking the other 
banks in their improper proceedings, it led and 
surpassed them all. A clique inside the Bank was 
jobbing in its shares, and robbing it to provide the 
margins. Instead of rectifying the currency, it 
made the currency worse. Instead of helping the 
country out of the distress produced by the war, it 
plunged the country into the commercial crisis of 
1819, which caused a general liquidation, lasting 
four or five years. All the old-school republicans 
denounced themselves for having abandoned their 


principles in voting for a national bank. All the 
ill-doing of the Bank they regarded as essential 
elements in the character of any national bank. 
Niles denounced the whole system of banking, and 
all the banks. He had good reason. It is almost 
incredible that the legislation of any civilized coun< 
try could have opened the chance for such abuses 
of credit, banking, and currency as then existed. 
The franchise of issuing paper notes to be used by 
the people as currency, that is to say, the license 
to appropriate a certain amount of the specie circu- 
lation of the country, and to put one's promissory 
notes in the place of it, was given away, not only 
without any equivalent, but without any guarantee 
at all. When Niles and Gouge denounced banking 
and banks, it was because they had in mind these 
swindling institutions. The great Bank justly 
suffered with the rest, because it had made itself 
in many respects like them. The popular anti- 
bank party, opposed to the money power, was very 
strong during the period of liquidation. 

Langdon Cheves, of South Carolina, was elected 
president of the Bank March 6, 1819. He set 
about restoring it. In three years he had suc- 
ceeded, although the losses were over three millions. 
was elected president of jhe^Bank 

in January, 1823. He was only thirty-seven years 
old, and had been more a literary man than any- 
thing else. He was appointed government director 
in 1819. His election in Cheves's place was the 
result of a conflict between a young and progressive 


policy, which he represented, and an old and con. 
servative policy. At the nearest date to January 
1, 1823, the bank had $4,600,000 notes out; 
$4,400,000 specie; $2,700,000 public deposits; 
$1,500,000 deposits by public officers ; $3,300,000 
deposits by individuals; $28,700,000 bills dis- 
counted. Congress refused to allow the officers of 
the branches to sign notes issued by the branches. 
It is not clear why this petition was refused, except 
that Congress was in no mood to grant any request 
of the Bank. The labor, for the president and 
cashier of the parent bank, of signing all the notes 
of the Bank and branches was very great. Ac- 
cordingly, in 1827, branch drafts were devised to 
avoid this inconvenience. They were the counter- 
part of bank-notes. They were drawn for even 
sums, by the cashier of any branch, on the parent 
bank, to the order of some officer of the branch, 
and endorsed by the latter to bearer. They then 
circulated like bank-notes. They were at first 
made in denominations of $5.00 and $10.00. In 
1831 the denomination $20.00 was added. Binney, ] 
Wirt, and Webster gave an opinion that these 
drafts were legal. Rush, Secretary of the Trea- 
sury, approved of them, and allowed public dues 
to be paid in them. 1 These branch drafts were a 
most unlucky invention, and to them is to be 
traced most of the subsequent real trouble of the 
Bank. The branches, especially the distant ones, 
when they issued these drafts, did not lend their 
1 Document B. 


own capital, but that of the Bank at Philadelphia. 
At the same time, therefore, they fell in debt to 
the parent bank. This stimulated their issues. 
The borrowers used these drafts to sustain what 
were called " race-horse bills." These were drafts 
drawn between the different places where tnere 
were branches, so that a bill falling due at one 
place was met by the discount of a bill drawn on 
another place. This system was equivalent to un- 
limited renewals. It kept up a constant inflation 
of credit. Up to the time of Jackson's accession 
these drafts had not yet done much harm, and had 
attracted no adverse criticism. 

At the session of 1827-28, P. P. Barbour 
brought forward a proposition to sell the stock 
owned by the United States in the Bank, A 
debate arose concerning the Bank, and it seems 
that there was a desire on the part of a portion of 
the opposition to put opposition to it into their 
platform. 1 The project failed. Barbour's resolu- 
tion was tabled, 174 to 9. 

The facts which are now to be narrated were 
not known to the public until 1832. They are 
told here as they occurred in the order of time. 

June 27, 1829, Levi Woodbury, senator from 
New Hampshire, wrote to Samuel Ingham, Secre- 
tary of the Treasury, making confidential com- 
plaints of Jeremiah Mason, the new president of 
the Portsmouth, New Hampshire, branch of the 
Bank of the United States, because (1) of the 
1 33 Niles, 275. 


general brusqueness of his manner; (2) of his 
severity and partiality in the matter of loans and 
collections. He added that Mason was a friend of 
Webster. " His political character is doubtless 
known to you." He also said that the complaints 
were general and from all political parties. Ing- 
ham enclosed the letter to Biddle, pointing out 
that it seemed to have been called out by the polit- 
ical effects of the action of the branch. He said 
that the administration wanted no favors from the 
Bank. Biddle replied that he would investigate. 
One great trouble with Biddle, which appeared 
at once in this correspondence, was that he wrote 
too easily. When he got a pen in his hand, it ran 
away with him. In this first reply, he went on to 
write a long letter, by which he drew out all the 
venomous rancor of Levi Wood bury and Isaac Hill 
against the old federalists and Jeremiah Mason 
and the Bank, all which lurked in Ingham's letter, 
but came out only in the form of innuendo and 
suggestion. The innuendoes stung Biddle, and 
he challenged the suggestions instead of ignoring 
them. Thus he gave them a chance to come forth 
without sneaking. He was jauntily innocent and 
unconscious of what spirit he was dealing with 
and what impended over him. He stated (1) that 
Mason had been appointed to a vacancy caused by 
the resignation, not by the removal, of his prede- 
cessor ; (2) that the salary of the position had 
not been increased for Mason ; (3) that, after 
Mason's appointment, Webster was asked to per- 


suade him to accept. He quoted a letter from 
Woodbury to himself, in July, in which Woodbury 
said that Mason was as unpopular with one party 
as the other. Biddle inferred, no doubt correctly, 
that Mason, as banker, had done his duty by the 
Bank, without regard to politics. He explained 
that the branch had previously not been well man- 
aged, and that Mason was put in as a competent 
banker and lawyer to put it right again. 1 It is 
easy to see that Mason, in order to put the bank 
right, had to act severely, and that he especially 
disappointed those who, on account of political 
sympathy, expected favors, but did not get them. 
Politics had run high in New Hampshire for ten or 
twelve years. Mason and Webster on one side, 
and Hill, Woodbury, and Plumer on the other, 
had been in strong antagonism. The relations had 
been amicable between some of them, but Hill and 
Mason were two men who could not meet without 
striking fire. Hill was now president of a small 
bank at Concord, and business jealousy was added 
to political animosity. Woodbury had been elected 

1 Hill, in a speech, March 3, 1834, said : " After the tariff law 
of 1828 had passed, the manufacturing stock fell, in many cases 
sinking the whole investment, so that where the bank had had 
no other security, bad debts were made. . . . The bank lost, in 
bad debts, some $80,000. . . . [Mason] in violation of the terms 
of payment on which loans had been made, called on all the cus- 
tomers of the bank to pay four for one of what they were required 
to pay by the implied terms of their first contract. ... It was 
this arbitrary breach of faith with the customers of the bank 
that induced the merchants and men of business of all parties to 
petition for the removal of the man who had caused the distress." 


to the Senate, as an Adams man, and the personal 
and political feelings were only more intense, be- 
cause Adams was called a republican. The feder- 
alists were first invited to support him, then they 
were ignored, 1 and Woodbury and Hill were work- 
ing for Jackson. 

Biddle, as if dissatisfied with whatever prudence 
he had shown in his first letter, wrote another, in 
which he declared that the Bank had nothing to 
do with politics ; that people were all the time 
trying to draw it into politics, but that it always 

July 23d Ingham wrote again to Biddle, insist- 
ing that there must be grounds of complaint, and 
that exemption from party preference was impossi- 
ble. He added that he represented the views of 
the administration. 

In August, the Secretary of War ordered the 
pension agency transferred from the Portsmouth 
branch to the bank at Concord, of which Isaac 
Hill had been president. The parent bank for- 
bade the branch to comply with this order, on the 
ground that it was illegal. The order was re- 

September 15th Biddle wrote again to Ingham. 
He had visited Buffalo and Portsmouth during the 
summer. His letter is sharp and independent in 
tone. He says that two memorials have been sent 
to him by Isaac Hill, Second Controller of the 
Treasury, one from the business men of Ports- 

1 1 Webster's Correspondence, 415, 419. 


mouth, and the other from sixty members of the 
Legislature of New Hampshire, requesting Mason's 
removal, and nominating a new board of directors, 
" friends of General Jackson in New Hampshire." 
Those proceedings were evidently planned by the 
anti-Bank clique at Washington to provoke Biddle. 
He hastened to crown that purpose with complete 
success. He says that public opinion in the com- 
munity around a bank is no test of bank manage- 
ment, and that the reported opinion at Portsmouth, 
upon examination, " degenerated into the personal 
hostility of a very limited, and for the most part 
very prejudiced, circle." He then takes up three 
points which he finds in Ingham's letters, suggested 
or assumed, but not formulated. These are : (1) 
That the Secretary has some supervision over the 
choice of officers of the Bank, which comes to him 
from the relations of the government to the Bank. 
(2) That there is some action of the government 
on the Bank, which is not precisely defined, but of 
which the Secretary is the proper agent. (3) That 
it is the right and duty of the Secretary to make 
known to the president of the Bank the views of 
the administration on the political opinions of the 
officers of the Bank. He then says that the board 
acknowledges no responsibility whatever to the 
Secretary in regard to the political opinions of the 
officers of the Bank ; that the Bank is responsible 
to Congress only, and is carefully shielded by its 
charter from executive control. He indignantly 
denies that freedom from political bias is impos- 


sible, shows the folly of the notion of political 
" checks and counter-balances " between the officers 
of the Bank, and declares that the Bank ought to 
disregard all parties. He won a complete victory 
on the argument of his points, but delivered him- 
self, on the main issue, without reserve into the 
hands of his enemies. 

Ingham's letter of October 5th is a masterly 
specimen of cool and insidious malice. In form it 
is smooth, courteous, and plausible, but it is full of 
menace and deep hostility. He discusses the points 
implied by him, but, in form, raised by Biddle. 
He says that if the Bank should abuse its powers 
the Secretary is authorized to remove the deposits. 
Hence the three points which Biddle found in his 
former letter are good. It does not appear that 
Biddle ever thought of this power as within the 
range of the discussion, or of the exercise of this 
power as among the possibilities. Ingham says 
there are two theories of the Bank : (1) That it is 
exclusively for national purposes and for the com- 
mon benefit of all, and that the " employment of 
private interests is only an incident, perhaps 
an evil, founded in mere convenience for care 
and management." (2) That it is intended " to 
strengthen the arm of wealth, and counterpoise the 
influence of extended suffrage in the disposition of 
public affairs," and that the public deposits are 
one of its means for performing this function. He 
says that there are two means of resisting the latter 
theory : the power to remove the deposits, and the 


power to appoint five of the directors. He adds 
that, if the Bank should exercise political influence, 
that would afford him the strongest motive for re- 
moving the deposits. Biddle's reply of October 
9th shows that he recognizes at last what temper he 
has to deal with. He is still gay and good-natured, 
and he recedes gracefully, only maintaining that it 
is the policy of the Bank to keep out of politics. 

In Ingham's letters of July 23d and October 
5th is to be found the key to the " Bank War." 
Ingham argues that the Bank cannot keep out of 
politics, that its officers ought to be taken from 
both parties, and that, if it meddles with politics, 
he will remove the deposits. The only road left 
by which to escape from the situation he creates is 
to go into politics on his side. No evidence is 
known to exist that the Bank had interfered in 
politics. The administration men are distinctly 
seen in this correspondence, trying to drive it to 
use political influence on their side, and the Bank 
resists, not on behalf of the other party, but on 
behalf of its independence. It is the second of 
the alleged theories in the letter of October 5th, 
however, which demands particular attention. 
The Jackson administration always pretended that 
the managers of the Bank construed the character 
and function of the Bank according to that theory. 
It is the Kentucky relief notion of the Bank in its 
extreme and most malignant form. The statement 
is, on its face, invidious and malicious. It is not, 
even in form, a formula of functions attributed to 


the Bank. It is a construction of the political 
philosophy of a national bank. It is not parallel 
with the first statement. It was ridiculous to al- 
lege that the stockholders of the Bank had sub- 
scribed twenty-eight million dollars, not even for 
party purposes, but to go crusading against demo- 
cracy and universal suffrage. However, the justice 
or injustice of the allegations in these letters, which 
could be submitted to no tribunal, and which touched 
motives, not acts, was immaterial. The adminis- 
tration had determined to make war on the Bank. 
The ultimate agents were Amos Kendall, who 
I brought the Kentucky relief element, and Isaac 
I Hill, who brought the element of local bank jeal- 
\ousy and party rancor. Inghain published, in 
/1832, 1 after the above correspondence had been 
published, an " Address " in his own defence. 
He says that he found, to his surprise, soon after 
he entered Jackson's cabinet, that the President 
and those nearest in his confidence felt animosity 
against the Bank. He saw that the persons wHo 
had the most feeling influenced the President's 
mind the most. Allegations of fact were reported 
in regard to political interference by the Bank. 
Ingham says that when he was urged to action 
about the Bank he tried to trace down these stories 
to something tangible. He quotes the only state- 
ment he ever got. It is a letter by Amos Kendall, 
giving second or third hand reports of the use of 
money by officers of the Bank in the Kentucky 
1 42 Niles, 315. 


election of 1825, when the old and new court ques- 
tion was at issue. 1 The man whom Kendall gave 
as his authority failed, when called upon, to sub- 
stantiate the assertion. In Kendall's Autobiogra- 
phy there is a gap from 1823 to 1829, and the 
origin of his eager hostility to the Bank is not 
known. Jackson is not known to have had any 
opinion about the Bank when he came to Washing- 
ton. He is not known to have had any collision 
with the Bank, except that, when he was on his 
way to Florida, as Governor, the branch at New 
Orleans refused his request that it would advance 
money to him on his draft on the Secretary of 
State at its face value. 2 Hill and Kendall, either 
by telling Jackson that the Bank had worked 
against him in the election, or by other means, in- 
fused into his mind the hostility to it which had 
long rankled in theirs. They were soon reen- 
forced by Blair, who was stronger than either, and 
more zealously hostile to the Bank than either. 

In November, 1829, about a week before Congress 
met, Amos Kendall sent privately 3 a letter to the 
" Courier and Enquirer," Jackson organ at New 
York, in which he insinuated that Jackson would 
come out against the Bank in the annual message. 
A head and tail piece were put to this letter, and 
it was put in as an editorial. It attracted some 
attention, but, its origin being of course unknown, 
it was received with a great deal of scepticism. 

1 See page 164. 2 2 Parton, 596. 

8 Memoirs of Bennett, 111. 


In its form it consisted of a series of queries, 1 of 
which the following may be quoted as the most 
significant, and as best illustrating the methods of 
procedure introduced in Jackson's administration. 
We must remember that these queries were drawn 
up by a man in the closest intimacy with the 
President, who helped to make the message what 
it was, and we must further remember what we 
have already learned of William B. Lewis's meth- 
ods. " Will sundry banks throughout the Union 
take measures to satisfy the general government 
of their safety in receiving deposits of the reve- 
nue, and transacting the banking concerns of the 
United States? Will the Legislatures of the 
several States adopt resolutions on the subject, 
and instruct their senators how to vote ? Will a 
proposition be made to authorize the government 
to issue exchequer bills, to the amount of the an- 
nual revenue, redeemable at pleasure, to constitute 
a circulating medium equivalent to the notes issued 
by the United States Bank ? " So far as appears, 
no one saw in these queries the oracle which was 
foretelling the history of the United States for the 
next ten or fifteen years. 

Jackson's first annual message contained a para- 
graph on the Bank which struck the whole country 
with astonishment. " We had seen," says Niles, 
" one or two dark paragraphs in certain of the 
newspapers, which led to a belief that the adminis- 
tration was not friendly to this great moneyed 
1 It is quoted 37 Niles, 378. (January 30, 1830.) 


institution, but few had any suspicion that it 
would form one of the topics of the first mes- 
sage." 1 After mentioning the fact that the char- 
ter would expire in 1836, and that a recharter 
would be asked for, the message said that such an 
important question could not too soon be brought 
before Congress. " Both the constitutionality and 
t]ie^ expediency of the law creating'this bank are 
prejl questioned bv a large portion -of our fellow 
citizens, and it must be admitted by all that it has 

,i B___j^ J *"**""^^M^ a _j__ JL jj lm jM^BMIMBMBB(BMBrcnTMm-lT-%n^ 

failed in the great end of establishing a uniform 
and sound currency." The question is then raised 
whether a bank could not be devised, " founded 
on the credit of the government and its revenues," 
which should answer all the useful purposes of the 
Bank of the United States. 

No period in the history of the United States 
could be mentioned when the country was in a 
state of more profound tranquillity, both in its 
domestic and foreign relations, and in a condition 
of more humdrum prosperity in its industry, than 
1829^ The currency never had been as good asjt 
was thenT?oT"the troubles of the early '20 s, both 
in the East and in the West, had been to a great 
extent overcome. 2 The currency has never, since 
1829, been better and more uniform, if we take the 

hole country over, than it was then. The pro- 
ings, of which the paragraph in the message 

1 37 Niles, 257. 

2 See the tables in 2 Macgregor, 1140; also Gallatin on the 

\ncy and Banking System of the United States. 


of 1829 was the first warning, threw the currency 
and banking of the country into confusion and un- 
certainty, one thing following upon another, and 
they have never yet recovered the character of es- 
tablished order and routine operation which they 
had then. The Bank charter was not to expire 
until March 3, 1836 ; that is, three years beyond 
the time when Jackson's term would expire. He 
seems to apologize for haste in bringing up the 
question of its renewal. It certainly was a prema- 
ture step, and can be explained only by the degree 
of feeling which the active agents had mingled 
with their opinions about the Bank. It was, 
moreover, a new mode of statement for the Presi- 
dent to address Congress, not on his own motion, 
and in order to set forth his own opinions and re- 
commendations, but as the mouth-piece of " a large 
portion of our fellow citizens." Who were they? 
How many were they ? How had they made their 
opinions known to the President ? Why did they 
not use the press or the Legislature, as usual, for 
making known their opinions ? Who must be dealt 
with in discussing the opinions, the President or 
the "large portion," etc.? What becomes of the 
constitutional responsibility of the President, if he 
does not speak for himself, but gets his notions 
before Congress as a quotation from somebody 
else, and that somebody " a large portion of our 
fellow citizens"? Then again the question must 
arise : Does the President correctly quote anybody ? 
No proofs can be found that any hundred persons 


in the United States had active doubts of the con- 
stitutionality and expediency of the Bank, or were 
looking forward to its recharter as a political crisis 
to be prepared for. If the theoretical question 
had been raised, a great many people would have 
said that they thought a national bank unconstitu- 
tional. They would have said, as any one must 
say now, that there was no power given in the 
Constitution to buy territory, but they did not pro- 
pose to give up Louisiana and Florida. Just so in 
regard to a national bank, "fhe pupreme_ Court 
had decided in McCulloch vs. Maryland that the 
Bank charter was constitutional, and that was the 
end of controversy. The question of the constitu- 

+.fona]jty nf thft panlr %d r|Q flp.fria.1Jty, fl^d m*mpiH 

no place in public opinion, so far as one can learn 
from newspapers, books, speeches, diaries, corre- 
spondence, or other evidence we have of what oc- 
cupied the minds of the people. Jacjsarm's state- 
ment was only a figure of speech. The observation 
which is most important for a fair judgment of his 
policy of active hostility to the Bank is, that any 
great financial institution or system which is in 
operation, and is performing its functions endura- 
bly, has a great presumption in its favor. The 
only reasonable question for statesman or financier 
is that of slow and careful correction and improve- 
ment. The man who sets out to overturn and de- 
stroy, in obedience to " a principle," especially if 
> he shows that he does not know the possible scope 
of his own action, or what he intends to construct 


afterwards, assumes a responsibility which no pub- 
lic man has any right to take. 

The vague and confused proposition of the Pres- 
ident for some new kind of bank added alarm to 
astonishment. What did he mean bv~~his bank 
Eased dnThe credit and revenues of the govern- 
ment? It sounded like a big paper-money machine. 
If there was any intelligible idea in it, it referred 
to something like the Bank of the Commonwealth 
of Kentucky on a still larger scale. It will be no- 
ticed that this notion of a national bank coincided 
with the suggestion, in Kendall's queries, 1 of a cur- 
rency of exchequer bills. The stock of the Bank 
declined from 125 to 116 on account of the mes- 
sage. 2 It was supposed that the President must 
have knowledge of some facts about the Bank. 

The part of the message about the Bank was re- 
ferred in both Houses. April 13, 1830, 3 McDuffie 
made a long report from the Committee on Ways 
and Means. He argued that the constitutionality 
of the Bank was settled by the decision of the 
Supreme Court and by prescription. He defended 
the history and expediency of the Bank, and ended 
by declaring the bank proposed by the President 
to be very dangerous and inexpedient, both finan- 
cially and politically, the latter because it would 
increase the power of the Executive. In the Sen- 
ate, Smith, of Maryland, reported from the Com- 
mittee on Finance in favor of the Bank. 4 The 

1 See page 280. 2 38 Niles, 177. 

3 38 Niles, 183. * 38 Niles, 126. 


House, May 10, 1830, tabled, by 89 to 66, resolu- 
tions that the House would not consent to renew 
the charter of the Bank ; and on May 29th it 
tabled, 95 to 67, a series of resolutions calling for 
a comprehensive report of the proceedings of the 
Bank. As yet there were no allegations against 
the management of the Bank. The stock rose to 
130 on the reports of the committees of Congress. 

A great many politicians had to " turn a sharp 
corner," as Niles expressed it, when Jackson came 
out against the Bank. His supporters in Pennsyl- 
vania cities were nearly all Bank men. Van Buren, 
Marcy, and Butler had signed a petition, in 1826, 
for a branch of the bank at Albany. 1 The petition 
was refused. In January, 1829, Van Buren, as 
Governor of New York, referred to banks under 
federal control as objectionable. The administra- 
tion party was not yet consolidated. It was still 
only that group of factions which had united in 
opposition to Adams. The Bank question was one 
of the great questions through which Jackson's 
popularity and his will drilled them into a solid 
party phalanx. All had to conform to the lines 
which he drew for the party, under the influence of 
Kendall, Lewis, and Hill. If they did not do so, 
they met with speedy discipline. 

Injjiis message for 1830, Jackson again inserted 

a paragraph about the Bank, and proposed a Bank 

as a " branch of the Treasury Department." The 

outline is very vague, but it approaches the sub* 

1 Mackeinzie, 98. 


treasury idea. No notice was taken of this part 
of the message in the session of 1830-31. On a 
test question, whether to refer the part of the mes- 
sage relating to the Bank to the Committee on 
Ways and Means or to a select committee, the 
Bank triumphed, 108 to 67. 

At the time of Tyler's struggle with Congress, 
about his " Exchequer " plan, 1841, he tried to 
win strength for it by connecting it with the re- 
commendation of Jackson. This led Jackson to 
write to Lewis, January 1, 1842, as follows : 

rt I informed you in my last, that I regretted that part 
of the Presidents message, that recommended a paper 
currency of treasury notes, and as the President has 
observed that it was shadowed forth by my message of 
1830, I sincerely regret that he did not fully embrace 
the propositions therein set forth -r- Turn to it, and you 
will find that there is no expression there that will 
justify the idea of Congress making a paper currency of 
any kind, much less by issue of Treasury notes and it 
is impossible to make out of any paper system, a sound 
circulating and uniform currency. You are certainly 
right that the mode presented is much better than a 
national Bank, such as Biddies, because it admits ex- 
pressly that congress has the right to alter or repeal it." 

A fortnight later, he added : 

" I discover that M r Rives has adverted to my mes- 
sage of 1830 in support of the measures recommended. 
I regretted to see this it shows him uncandid, because 
there is no likeness between them. In my message there 
is no recommendation to issue treasury notes, or to dis- 


count bills of exchange or to purchase property, with 
power only to remit the funds of the government. My 
explanatory remarks shews this I remark, " This not 
being a corporate body, having no stockholders, debtors, 
or property, could not become dangerous to our country 
&c &c, as incorporated Banks with all their mamoth 
powers &c &c In mine there were to be no paper, no 
debtors, a cash business, where there could be no loss to 
the government The word Bank was used by me in, 
its proper sense to distinguish it from an incorporated! 
Bank a place where the money of the government was! 
to be kept, to clearly show that it was to have no stock-' 
holders, no power to issue paper, discount or exchange | 
and if M r Rives will read all my messages and my fare-/ 
well address which was intended to give my full viewd 
on Banking he will find he has done me great injustice 
in referring to my messages, as authority for the fiscal 
plan proposed by President Tyler. Every one who. 
knows me, must be aware of my universal hostility 
against all government paper currency The old con- 
tinental currency, was sufficient to convince me that a 
greater curse could not visit a nation than a paper cur- 
rency " \ 

There is a bank-plan in print which is attributed 
to Jackson. 2 

Benton offered a joint resolution, in the Senate, 
February 2, 1831, " That the charter of the Bank 
of the United States ought not to be renewed." 
The Senate refused leave, 23 to 20, to introduce 
it. In July, 1831, the Secretary of War ordered 
the pension funds for the State of New York to be 
1 Ford MSS. 2 Ingersoll, 283. 


removed from the New York branch. Biddle re- 
monstrated, because there was no authority of law 
for the order, and the Auditor had refused to accept 
such an order as a voucher in a previous case. 
Secretary Cass revoked the order, March 1, 1832. 
In the message of 1831 Jackson referred to the 
Bank question as one on which he had discharged 
his duty and freed his responsibility. The Secre- 
tary of the Treasury, McLane, in his annual report, 
December, 1831, made a long and strong argument 
in favor of the Bank. If we may judge from the 
tone of the message of 1831, Jackson was willing 
to allow the Bank question to drop, at least until 
the presidential election should be over. There is 
even room for a suspicion that McLane's argument 
in favor of the Bank was a sort of " hedging ; " 
for although the Secretary's report was not neces- 
sarily submitted to the President, 1 Jackson was 
hardly the man to allow a report to 'be sent in of 
which he disapproved. 

1 See page 353. 



CLAY was the leading man in the opposition, 
but the opposition was by no means united. A 
new factor had been gaining importance in politics 
for the last few years. The politicians had ignored 
it and sneered at it, but it had continued to grow, 
and was now strong enough to mar, if it could not 
make, a national election. 

In 1826 a bricklayer, named William Morgan, 
who lived at Batavia, N. Y., and was very poor, 
thought that he could earn something by writing 
an exposure of the secrets of^ free-masonry. 1 he 
being a mason. The masons learned that he had 
written such a book. They caused his arrest and 
imprisonment over Sunday on a frivolous civil 
complaint, and searched his house for the manu- 
script during his absence. A month later he was 
arrested again for a debt of $2.10, and imprisoned 
under an execution for |2.69, debt and costs. 
The next day the creditor declared the debt satis- 
fied. Morgan was released, passed at the prison 
door into the hands of masked men, was placed in 

1 Report of the Special Agent of the State of New York. 5 
Ann. Keg. 537. 


a carriage, taken to Fort Niagara, and detained 
there. A few days later a body was found floating 
in the river, which was identified as Morgan's 
body. The masons always denied that this identi- 
fication was correct. Morgan has never been seen 
or heard of since. In January, 1827, certain 
persons were tried for conspiracy and abduction. 
They pleaded guilty, and so prevented a disclosure 
of details. 1 The masons confessed and admitted 
abduction, but declared that Morgan was not dead. 
The opinion that Morgan had been murdered, and 
that the body found was his, took possession of the 
minds of those people of western New York who 
were not masons. Popular legend and political 
passion have become so interwoven with the ori- 
ginal mystery that the truth cannot now be known. 
The outrage on Morgan aroused great indigna- 
tion in western New York, then still a simple 
frontier country. Public opinion acted on all sub- 
jects. A committee appointed at a mass-meeting 
undertook an extra-legal investigation, and soon 
brought the matter into such shape that no legal 
tribunal ever after had much chance of unravelling 
it. After the fashion of the time, and of the place 
also, a political color was immediately given to the 
affair. As Spencer, the special agent appointed 
by the State to investigate the matter, declared in 
his report, the fact of this political coloring was 
disastrous to the cause of justice. The politicians 

1 2 Hammond, 376. See, however, the trial reported 4 Ann, 
Tteg. 68. 


tried to put down the whole excitement, because it 
traversed their plans and combinations. They 
asked, with astonishment and with justice, what 
the affair had to do with politics. The popular 
feeling, however, was very strong, and it was fed 
by public meetings, committee reports, etc. The 
monstrous outrage deserved that a strong public 
opinion should sustain the institutions of justice in 
finding out and punishing the perpetrators. Some 
of the officers were too lax and indifferent in the 
discharge of their duties to suit the public temper. 
They were masons. Hence the inference that a 
man who was a mason was not fit or competent to 
be entrusted with public duties. The political 
connection was thus rendered logical and at least 
plausible. Many persons resolved not to vote for 
any one who was a mason for any public office. 
Moreover, the excitement offered an unexampled 
opportunity to the ambitious young orators and 
politicians of the day. It was a case where pure 
heat and emphasis were the only requirements of 
the orator. He need not learn anything, or have 
any ideas. A number of men rose to prominence 
on the movement who had no claims whatever to 
public influence. They of course stimulated as 
much as they could the popular excitement against 
masonry, which furnished them their opportunity 
and their capital. Many masons withdrew from 
the order. Others foolishly made light of the 
outrage itself. For the most part, however, the 
masons argued that masonry was no more respon- 


sible, as an institution, for the outrage on Morgan 
than the Christian church is responsible for the 
wrongs done in its name by particular persons and 
groups. These discussions only sharpened the 
issue, and masons and anti-masons came to be a 
division which cut across all the old party lines in 
the State of New York. In 1828 the anti-masons 
were the old Clintonians, 1 the rump of the federal- 
ists, and many buck-tails, with whom horror at the 
Morgan outrage was a controlling motive. Jack- 
son, Clinton, and Van Buren were then allied. 
Jackson and Clinton were masons. The Clinton- 
ians who would not follow Clinton to the support 
of Jackson, either because they disliked the man, 
or because he was a mason, and the buck-tails who 
would not vote for a mason, were Adams men. 
The great body of the buck-tails (amongst whom 
party discipline was stronger than in any other 
faction), the Clintonians who followed Clinton 
into the Jackson camp, and the masons who let 
defence of the order control their politics, were 
Jackson men. Hence the New York vote (which 
was taken by districts in 1828) was divided. 

The regency buck-tail democrats, being in control 
of the State government, tried to put down the 
excitement by indirect means, because of its dis- 
organizing effects. This made them appear to 
suppress inquiry, and to be indifferent to the out- 
rage. It only fanned the flame of popular in- 
dignation, and strengthened anti-masonry. The 
1 Clinton died February 11, 1828. 


anti-masons., nnt an nn nnti mUmulULiATIon 
jmvty \r\ 1 &30. They held a convention at Utica 
in August, and framed a platform of national 
principles. This is the first " platform f'_ as dis~ 
tinguished from the old-fashioned address. The 
anti-masons had come together under no other 
bond than opposition to masonry. If they were to 
be a permanent party, and a national party, they 
needed to find or make some political principles. 
This was their great political weakness and the 
sure cause of their decay. Their party had no 
root in political convictions. It had its root else- 
where, and in very thin soil too, for a great political 
organization. Since the masons were not con- 
stantly and by the life principle of their order per- 
petrators of outrages and murders, they could not 
furnish regular fuel to keep up the indignation of 
the anti-masons. The anti-masons, then, adopted 
their principles as an after-thought ; and for this 
reason they needed an explicit statement of them 
in a categorical form, i. e., a platform, far more 
than this would be needed by a party which had 
an historical origin, and traditions derived from 
old political controversies. Anti-masonry spread 
rapidly through New York and large parts of Penn- 
sylvania and Massachusetts. Vermont became a 
stronghold of it. It is by no means extinct there 
now. It had considerable strength in Connect- 
icut and Ohio. It widened into hostility to all 
secret societies and extra-judicial oaths. Perhaps 
it reached its acme when it could lead men like 


J. Q. Adams and Joseph Story to spend days 
in discussing plans for abolishing the secrecy of 
the Phi Beta Kappa society of Harvard College. 1 
That action of theirs only showed to what extent 
every man is carried away by the currents of 
thought and interest which prevail for the time 
being in the community. 

Thejmti-niasons next inv^nte^ t.y nntinnnl p^Iif 
leal cenvenflorL? They held one at Philadelphia, 
September 11, 1830, 3 which called another, to 
meet September 26, 1831, at Baltimore, to nomi- 
nate candidates for President and Vice-President. 
At the latter date 112 delegates met. 4 William 
Wirt, of Maryland, was nominated for President, 
and Amos Ellmaker, of Pennsylvania, for Vice- 
President, almost unanimously. Wirt had been a 
mason, and had neglected, not abandoned, the 
order. In his letter of acceptance 5 he said that 
he had often spoken of " masonry and anti-masonry 
as a fitter subject for farce than tragedy." He 
circumscribed and tamed down the whole anti- 
masonic movement, and put himself on no platform 

1 8 Adams, 383. 

2 A convention of delegates from eleven States nominated De 
Witt Clinton, in 1812. Binns (page 244) claims to have invented 
the national convention, but his was a project for introducing 
into the congressional caucus of the republican party special dele- 
gates from the non-republican States, so as to make that body 
represent the whole party. 

3 39 Niles, 58. 

4 41 Niles, 83, 107. Twelve States were represented. W. H. 
Seward and Thaddeus Stevens were in the convention. 

5 2 Kennedy's Wirt, 350. 


save hostility to oaths which might interfere with 
a man's civic duties. He put the whole Morgan 
case aside, except so far as, on the trial, it appeared 
that masonry hindered justice. The anti-masons 
were, in fact, aiming at political power. They 
had before them the names of McLean, Calhoun, 
and J. Q. Adams. 1 New York wanted McLean. 
He declined. 2 The anti-masonic convention pub- 
lished a long address, setting forth the history 
and principles of the party. 3 There was a hope, 
in which Wirt seems to have shared, that when 
the anti-masons presented a separate nomination 
Clay would withdraw, and the national republicans 
would take up Wirt. 4 When this hope had passed 
away, Wirt wanted to withdraw, but could not do 
so. 5 He had from the first desired Clay's election, 
and had agreed to stand, only when assured that 
Clay could not unite the anti-Jackson men. Clay 
refused to answer the interrogatories of the anti- 
masons. He said, " I do not know a solitary pro- 
vision in the Constitution of the United States 
which conveys the slightest authority to the general 
government to interfere, one way or the other, 
with either masonry or anti-masonry." He said 
that if the President should meddle with that mat- 
ter he would be a usurper and a tyrant. 6 


1 8 Adams, 412, 416. 2 41 Niles, 259. 3 41 Niles, 166. 

4 Judge Spencer thought that Wirt could unite the opposition, 
Clay would stand back, and that Wirt could be elected over 

ackson. 1 Curtis's Webster, 402. 

5 2 Kennedy's Wirt, 356, 362, 366. 

6 41 Niles, 260; 8 Adams, 430. 


The opposition therefore went into the contest 
divided and discordant. The anti-masons were 
strong enough to produce that state of things, and 
of course their conduct showed that the opposition 
was not united on any political policy whatever. 
Jackson, on the contrary, had been consolidating 
a party, which had a strong consciousness of its 
power and its purpose, and a vigorous party will. 
Jackson had the credit of recovering the West 
India trade, settling the spoliation claims, and 
placing all foreign relations on a good footing. 
He also claimed that he had carried the jid minis- 
tration of the government back to the Jeffersonian 
ideas. In general this meant that he held to the 
non-interference theory of government, jimljia^the 
policy of leaving people to be happy in their own 
waj. He had not yet been forced to commit him- 
self on land and tariff, although he had favored a 
liberal policy about land ; but on internal improve- 
ments he had spoken clearly, and inferences were 
freely drawn as to what he would do on land and 
tariff. He had favored State rights and strict 
construction in all the cases which had arisen. 
He had discountenanced all heavy expenditures 
on so-called national objects, and had prosecuted 
as rapidly as possible the payment of the debt. 
Here was a strong record and a consistent one on 
a number of great points of policy, and that, of 
course, is what is needed to form a party. The 
record also furnished two or three good party 
cries. Further, the general non-interference policy 


strengthens any government which recurs to it; 
though all governments in time depart from it, be- 
cause they always credit themselves with power to 
do better for the people than the people can do 
for themselves. In 1831-32 Jackson had not yet 
reached this stage in his career. The delicate 
points in his record were tariff and Bank. If he 
assailed the tariff, would he not lose Pennsylvania, 
Ohio, and Kentucky ? If he favored it, would he 
not lose the South? This was the old division 
in the body of his supporters, and it seemed that 
he might now be ruined if that cleft were opened. 
Also, if he went on with the " Bank War," would 
he not lose Pennsylvania? His mild message on 
the Bank in 1831 seemed to indicate fear. 

Clay declared unhesitatingly that the campaign 
required that the opposition should force the fight- 
ing on tariff and Bank, especially on the latter. 
We have seen * what his demeanor and demands 
were in the conference at Washington. For the 
fight out-of-doors he thought that the recharter of 
the Bank was the strongest issue he could make. 
Of course Benton's assertion 2 that the Bank at- 
tacked Jackson is a ridiculous misrepresentation. 
Clay did, however, seize upon the question which 
Jackson had raised about the Bank, and he risked 
that important financial institution on the fortunes 
of a political campaign. The Bank was very un- 
willing to be so used. Its disinterested friends in 
both parties strongly dissuaded Biddle from allow- 
1 Page 262. 2 1 Benton, 227. 


ing the question of recharter to be brought into the 
campaign. 1 Clay's advisers also tried to dissuade 
him. The Bank, however, could not oppose the 
public man on whom it depended most, and the 
party leaders deferred at last to their chief. Jack- 
son never was more dictatorial and obstinate than 
Clay was at this juncture. Clay was the champion 
of the system of state-craft which makes public 
men undertake a tutelage of the nation, and teaches 
them not to be content to let the nation grow by 
its own forces, and according to the shaping of the 
forces and the conditions. His system of states- 
manship is one which always offers shelter to num- 
bers of interested schemes and corrupt enterprises. 
The public regarded the Bank, under his political 
advocacy, as a part of that system of state-craft. 

The national RepuMififliU rnnirflatinn mrt at 
Baltimore, December 12, 1831. It consisted 2 of 
155 delegates from seventeen States. Abner La- 
cock, of Pennsylvania, who as senator had made 
a very strong report against Jackson on the Semi- 
nole war, was president of the convention. John 
Sergeant, of Pennsylvania, was nominated for Vice- 
President. The convention issued an address, in 
which the Bank question was put forward. It was 
declared that the President u is fully and three 
times over pledged to the people to negative any 
bill that may be passed far rechartering the Bank, 
and there is little doubt that the additional influ- 
ence which he would acquire by a reelection would 
1 Ingersoll, 268. 2 41 Niles, 301. 


be employed to carry through Congress the ex- 
traordinary substitute which he has repeatedly 
proposed." Thft ffpp A Ri1i tl7 pr ftff > ii'v wfl-% to dcjfe^^ 
Jaekson in order to save the Bank_and to prevent 
the. device proposed by Jackson from being tried. 
Such a challenge '"SB 1 "flint" uwnM have but one 
^glUikiJOU. Ill . jMJkil every faculty he pos- 

sessed into activity to compass the destruction 
the Bank.' Instead of retiring from the positioi 
he hacTtaken, the moment there was a fight to 
fought, he did what he had done at New Orleans 
He moved his lines up to the last point he could' 
command on the side towards the enemy. The" 
anti-Bank men, Kendall, Blair, and Hill, must have 
been delighted to see the adversary put spurs into 
Jackson's animosity. The proceedings seemed to 
prove just what the anti-Bank men had asserted : 
that the Bank was a great monster, which aimed 
to control elections, and to set up and put down 
Presidents. *^he campaign of 1832 was a struggle 
between the popularity of the Bank and the popu- 
larity of Jackson. His popularity in rural Penn- 
sylvania had'^never had any rational basis, and 
hence could not be overthrown by rational deduc- 
tions. His spirit and boldness in meeting the issue 
offered by Clay won him support. His party was 
iiQt broken ; it was consolidated. The opposition 
to him was divided, discordant, urfceTtain of itself, 
vague 'm its principle, and hesitating as to its pro- 
gramme.' The Bank could never be a strong pop- 
ular interest, nor the maintenance of it a positive 


purpose which could avail to consolidate a party. 
Opposition to secret societies was a whim which 
never could inspire a party ; it could only avail to 
put the kind of people who take up whims in the 
attitude of stubborn opposition, which makes it im- 
practicable to cooperate with them in organization. 
On the 9th of January, 1832, in prosecution of 
the programme, the memorial of the Bank for a 
renewal of its charter was presented in the Senate 
by Dallas, and in the House by McDuffie. These 
men were both " Bank democrats." This name is 
ambiguous, unless we distinguish between Bank 
democrats and bank democrats, for the latter name 
began to be given to those who were interested in 
local banks and who went over to Jackson when 
he attacked their great rival. Sargent 1 says Bid- 
die told him that the Bank wanted Webster, or 
some such unequivocal friend of the Bank, to pre- 
sent the memorial, but that Dallas claimed the duty 
as belonging to a Pennsylvanian. There was great 
and just dissatisfaction with Dallas for the way in 
which he managed the business. He intimated a 
doubt whether the application was not premature, 
and a doubt about the policy of the memorial, lest 
" it might be drawn into a real or imaginary con- 
flict with some higher, some more favorite, some 
more immediate wish or purpose of the American 
people." In the Senate the petition was referred 
to a select committee, and in the House to the 
Committee on Ways and Means. The Senate 

1 1 Sargent, 215. 


committee reported favorably, March 13th, and 
recommended only a few changes in the old char- 
ter, They proposed to demand a bonus of one and 
a half millions in three annual instalments. In 
the House, McDuffie reported February 9th. 1 He 
said that the proposition to recharter had called out 
a number of wild propositions. The old Bank was 
too large, yet now one was proposed with a capital 
of fifty millions. He criticised the notion that all 
citizens should have an equal right to subscribe to 
the stock of the Bank. If A has $100 on balance, 
and B owes $100 on balance, their " equal right " 
to subscribe to bank stock is a strange thing to 

Benton 2 says that the opponents of the Bank in 
Congress agreed upon a policy. They determined 
toj^lit the charter at every point, and to bring 
the^ JB&Qk-iutQ odium as much as possible. He 
says that he organized a movement to this eifect in 
the House, incited Clayton, of Georgia, to demand 
an investigation of the Bank, and furnished him 
with the charges and specifications on which to 
base that demand. Clayton moved for an investi- 
gation, February 23d. He presented Benton's 
charges, seven important and fifteen minor ones. 
McDuffie answered the charges at once, but the 
investigation was ordered to be made by a special 
committee. They reported, April 30th. The ma- 
jority^ reported that the Bank ought not to be 
rechartered until the debt was all paid and the 

1 Document C. 2 1 Benton, 236. 


revenue readjusted. R. M. Johnson signed this 
report, so as to make a majority, out of good- 
nature. He rose in his place in Congress and said 
that he had not looked at a document at Phila- 
delphia. The minority reported that the Bank 
ought to be rechartered; that it was sound and 
useful. John Quincy Adams made a third report, 
in which he brought his characteristic industry to 
bear on the question, and discussed all the points 
raised in the attack on the Bank. It is to his 
report that we are indebted for a knowledge of 
the correspondence of 1829 between Biddle and 
Ingham, and the controversy over the Portsmouth 
branch, which was the first skirmish in the " Bank 
War." i 

The charges against the Bank, and the truth 
about them, so far as we can discover it, were as 
follows : 

(1.) Usury.^ The bank sold Bank of Kentucky 
notes to certain persons on long credit. When 
these persons afterwards claimed an allowance for 
depreciation, it was granted. A case which came to 
trial went off on technicalities, which were claimed 
to amount to a confession by the Bank that it had 
made an unlawful contract. 2 The Bank had also 
charged discount and exchange for domestic bills, 
on such a basis that the two amounted to more than 
six per cent, the rate to which it was restrained by 

1 Document B. 

2 Cf. Bank of the United States vs. William Owens et d. 2 
Peters, 527. 


its charter. Thi^ch^rge^j5fas~o-^ofetJa:ue. The 
device was used by all banks to evade the usury 

(2.) Branch drafts issued as currency^ The 
amount of^e^ouiEs&nHing was $7,400,000. The 
majority of the committee doubted the lawfulness 
of the branch drafts, but said nothing about 
the danger from them as instruments of credit. 
Adams said that they were useful, but likely to 
do mischief. These drafts were in form redeem- 
able where issued, but in intention and practice 
they were redeemed hundreds of miles away, and 
they had no true convertibility. There was no 
check whatever on the inflation of the currency 
by them so long as credit was active. Cambre- 
leng very pointedly asked Biddle how the branch 
draft arrangement differed from an obligation of a 
Philadelphia bank to redeem all the notes of all 
the banks in Pennsylvania. Biddle replied that 
the Bank of the United States controlled all the 
branches which issued branch drafts on it. That 
was, to be sure, the assumption, but he had had 
hard experience all winter that it was not true in 
fact. 1 

(3.) Sales of coin, especially American coin. 
The Bank hacT bought and sold foreign coin by 
weight, and had sold 884,734.44 of American gold 
coin. The majority held that such coins were not 
bullion, because Congress had fixed their value by 
law. Adams easily showed the fallacy of this. All 
1 See below, page? 3U-I2, 


gold coins, then, American included, were a com- 
modity, not money. 1 

(4.) Sales of public stocks. The Bank was for- 
bidden by the charter to sell public stocks, the 
object being to prevent it from manipulating the 
price of the same. In 1824, in aid of a refunding 
scheme, the Bank took some public stocks from 
the government, and had special permission by act 
of Congress to sell them. Nevertheless, the ma- 
jority disapproved of the sale. 

(5.) Gifts to roads, canals, etc. The Bank had 
made two subscriptions of $1,500 each to the stock 
of turnpike companies. The other cases were all 
petty gifts to fire companies, etc. The majority 
argued that, since the administration had pro- 
nounced against internal improvements, the Bank 
ought not to have assisted any such works. Adams 
said that the administration had opposed internal 
improvements, on the ground that they were uncon- 
stitutional when undertaken by the federal govern- 
ment ; but he asked what argument that furnished 
against such works when undertaken by anybody 

(6.) Building houses to let or sell. The Bank 
had been obliged, in some cases, to take real estate 
for debts. When it could not sell, it had, in a 
few cases, improved. 

These points were the alleged violations of the 
charter. Biddle denied the seventh charge, of non- 
user, in failing to issue notes in the South and 
1 See page 390. 


West for seven years. Adams pointed out that 
these charges would only afford ground for a scire 
facias to go before a jury on the facts. 

The charges of mismanagement, and the truth 
about them, so far as we can ascertain, were as 
follows : 

(1.) Subsidizing the press. Webb and Noah, 
of the " Courier and Enquirer " (administration 
organ until April, 1831 ; then in favor of the 
Bank), Gales and Seaton, of the " National Intel- 
ligencer" (independent opposition), Duff Green, 
of the " Telegraph " (administration organ until 
the spring of 1831), and Thomas Ritchie, of the 
Richmond " Enquirer " (administration), were on 
the books of the Bank as borrowers. The change 
of front by the " Courier and Enquirer " was re- 
garded as very significant. Adams said that there 
was no law against subsidizing the press, and that 
the phrase meant nothing. He protested against 
the examination of the editors. The case stood so 
that, if the Bank discounted a note for an admin- 
istration editor, it was said to bribe him ; if for an 
opposition editor, it was said to subsidize him. 

(2.) Favoritism to Thomas Biddle, second cou- 
sin of the president of the Bank. T. Biddle was 
the broker of the Bank. N. Biddle admitted 
that the Bank had followed a usage, adopted by 
other banks, of allowing cash in the drawer to be 
loaned out to particular persons, and replaced by 
securities, which were passed as cash, for a few 
days. He said the practice had been discontinued. 


Reuben M. Whitney made a very circumstantial 
charge that T. Biddle had been allowed to do this, 
and that he had paid no interest for the funds of 
the bank of which he thus got the use. The loans 
to him were very large. October 15, 1830, he had 
81,131,672 at five per cent. N. Biddle proved that 
he was in Washington when Whitney's statement 
implied his presence in Philadelphia. Adams said 
that Whitney lied. It was certainly true, and was 
admitted, that T. Biddle had had enormous confi- 
dential transactions with the Bank, but Whitney 
was placed, in respect to all the important part of 
his evidence, in the position of a convicted calum- 
niator. He went to Washington, where he was 
taken into the kitchen cabinet and made special 
agent of the deposit banks. In 1837 he published 
an "Address to the American People," in which 
he reiterated the charges against Biddle. 1 

(3.) Exporting specie, and drawing specie from 
the South and West. The minority state that the 
usual current was, that silver was imported from 
Mexico to New Orleans, and passed up the Missis- 
sippi and Ohio, and was exported to China from 
the East. From 1820 to 1832, $22,500,000 were 
drawn from the South and West to New York. 
The Bank was charged with draining the West of 
specie. So far as the current of silver was normal, 
the Bank had nothing to do with it. If there had 
been no banks of issue, the West would have kept 
enpugh specie for its use, and the current would 
1 52 Niles, 106. 


have flowed through and past, leaving always 
enough. The paper issues in the valley drove out 
the specie, and little stayed. The branch drafts, 
after 1827, helped to produce this result, and the 
charge was, in so far, just. 1 The Bank was also 
charged with exporting specie as a result of its 
exchange operations. It sold drafts on London 
for use in China, payable six months after sight. 
They were sold for the note of the buyer at one 
year. The goods could be imported and sold to 
meet the draft. This produced an inflation of 
credit, since one who had no capital, if he could 
get the bank accommodation, could extend credit 
indefinitely. The majority made a point on this, 
but they added the following contribution to finan- 
cial science : " The legitimate object of banks the 
committee believe to be granting facilities, not 
loaning capital." On that theory there would 
have been no fault to be found with the China 
drafts, which must have been a great " facility " 
to those who could get them, and who had no other 

(4.) The improper increase of branches. It 
was true that there were too many. Cheves, in 
his time, thought some of them disadvantageous to 
the Bank ; but it had been importuned to establish 
them, and there was complaint if a branch was 
lacking where the government or influential indi- 

1 Gouge says that, in 1828, there was no local bank in operation 
in Kentucky, Indiana, Illinois, or Missouri, and only one each in 
Tennessee, Mississippi, and Alabama. Gouge, 39. 


viduals wanted one. To abolish one was not to 
be thought of at all. The whole history of the 
Bank proves the evil of branches, unless the canons 
of banking which are recognized are the soundest, 
and the discipline the most stringent. 

(5.) Expansion of the circulation by 11,300,000 
between September 1, 1831, and April 1, 1832, 
although the discounts had been reduced during 
the winter. The Bank was struggling already 
with the branch drafts, and the facts alleged were 
produced by its efforts to cope with the effects of 
the drafts. 

(6.) Failure of the Bank to serve the nation. 
The majority made another extraordinary blunder 
here. They said that the duties were paid at New 
York and Philadelphia, and that drafts on these 
cities were always at a premium. Hence they 
argued that the Bank gained more the further it 
transferred funds for the government. The minor- 
ity ridiculed this as an annihilation of space, a 
means of making a thing worth more the further it 
was from where it was wanted. 

(7.) Mismanagement of the public deposits. 
The majority state what they think the Bank ought 
to do. It ought to use its capital as a permanent 
fund, and loan the public deposits on time, so as 
to be payable near the time when they would be 
required by the government for the debt payments. 
If the Bank had done this it would have carried to 
a maximum the disturbances in the money market 
which were actually produced by the semi-annual 


payments on the debt. It would have inflated and 
contracted its discounts by an enormous sum every 
six months. 

(8.) Postponement of the payment of the three 
per cents. These stocks were issued in 1792 for 
the accrued interest on the Revolutionary debt. 
They were to be paid at par. The Secretary in- 
formed the Bank, March 24th, just before the 
Bank committee was raised, that he should pay 
half the three per cents ($6,000,000) in July. 
Biddle hastened to Washington to secure a post- 
ponement ; not, as he affirmed, for the sake of 
the Bank, but for two other reasons : (1) that 
19,000,000 duty bonds would be payable July 1st, 
and the merchants would be put to inconvenience if 
the debt payment fell at that time ; (2) a visitation 
of cholera was to be feared, which would derange 
industry ; and the payment of the debt, with the 
recall of so much capital loaned to merchants, 
would add to the distress. The friends of the 
Bank said that these reasons were good and suffi- 
cient. Its enemies said that they were specious, 
but were only pretexts. The Secretary agreed to 
defer the payment of 15,000,000 of the three per 
cents until October 1st, the Bank agreeing to pay 
the interest for three months. 1 This matter will 
be discussed below. 

(9.) Incomplete number of directors. Biddle 
was both government director and elected director, 
so that there were only twenty-four in all. The 

1 Document D. 


government directors might be reappointed indefi- 
nitely. The elected ones rotated. Biddle was 
both, so that he might always be eligible to the 

(10.) Large expenditures for printing : $6,700 
in 1830 : $9,100 in 1831. From 1829, the date 
of Jackson's first attack, the Bank spent money on 
pamphlets and newspapers to influence public 
opinion in its favor. 

(11.) Large contingent expenditures. There 
was a contingent fund account, the footings of 
which, in 1832, were $6,000,000, to sink the losses 
of the first few years, the bonus, premiums on 
public stocks bought, banking house, etc., etc. 
The suggestion was that this was a convenient 
place in which to hide corrupt expenditures, and 
that the sum was so large as to raise a suspicion 
that such were included in it. 

(12.) Loans to members of Congress in ad- 
vance of appropriations. Adams objected to this 
as an evil practice. He said afterwards that the 
investigation into this point was dropped, because 
it was found that a large number of congressmen 
of both parties had had loans. 

(13.) Kefusal to give a list of stockholders resi- 
dent in Connecticut, so that that State might col- 
lect taxes from them on their stock. 

(14.) Usurpation of the control of the Bank by 
the exchange committee of the board of directors, 
to the exclusion of the other directors. This 
charge was denied. 


In all this tedious catalogue of charges we can 

,,,,, , , ,__ - B|M ^ | ^^ M||t||taBI i^aa^*aJMMMMMhMMMig 

fiuj. nothing but frivolous complaints and ignorant 
criticism successfully refuted, except when we 
tonrVh the biCaflfiJLadjia^feU The majority of the 
committee, if all their points are taken together, 
thought that the Bank ought to lend the public 
deposits liberally, and draw them in promptly 
when wanted to pay the debt, yet ought to refuse 
no accommodation (especially to any one who was 
embarrassed), ought not to sell its public stocks, 
nor increase its circulation, nor draw in its loans, 
nor part with its specie, nor draw on the debtor 
branches in the West, nor press the debtor State 
banks, nor contract any temporary loans. JThe 
student of tlie evidence and reports of 1832, if lie 
believes the Bank's statements in the evidence, will 
say tlTaf" tlio Bank was triumphantly vindicated. 
Two facts, however, are very striking : (1) The 
most important of the charges against which the 
Bank successfully defended itself in 1832 were the 
very acts of which it was guilty in 1837-38, and 
they were what ruined it ; these were the second 
charge, which involved Whitney's veracity, and 
the fourteenth charge, which the bank denied. 
(2) Whether the Bank was thoroughly sincere 
and above-board in these matters is a question on 
which an unpleasant doubt is thrown by the cer- 
tainty that it was not thoroughly honest in some 
other matters. In regard to the three per cents 
(under 8), it is certain that Biddtowaiaied to 
defer the payment for the sake of the ^Eimln H0f it Iff 


was embarrassed already by the debt of the western 
branches, which had been produced by the opera- 
tion of the branch drafts. Their effect was just 
beginning to tell seriously. There was a great 
movement of free capital in the form of specie to 
this country in 1830, on account of revolutions in 
Europe. In 1830 and 1831 the United States 
paid its stock note in the capital of the Bank. 
Capital was easy to borrow. In October, 1831, a 
certain stringency set in. The branch drafts were 
transferring the capital of the Bank to the western 
branches, and locking it up there in accommoda- 
tion paper, indefinitely extended by drawing and 
redrawing. Biddle could not make the western 
branches pay. He was forced to curtail the east- 
ern branches. At such a juncture it was impossi- 
ble for him to see with equanimity the public bonds 
which bore only three per cent interest paid off at 
par, when the market rate for money was seven or 
eight per cent. He wanted to get possession of that 
capital. Even before he received notice that the 
three per cents were to be paid, he tried to nego- 
tiate with Ludlow, the representative of a large 
number of holders of the three per cents, for the 
purchase of the same. Ludlow had not power to 
sell. 1 Great consequences hung on the strait into 
which the branch drafts had pushed the Bank, and 
upon this measure of relief to which Biddle had re- 
course. Biddle was too plausible. In any emergency 
he was ready to write a letter or report, to smooth 

1 Folk's Minority Report, 1833, Document E. 


things over, and present a good face in spite of 
facts. Any one who has carefully studied the 
history of the Bank, and Biddle's "statements," 
will come to every statement of his with a disa- 
greeable sense of suspicion. It is by no means 
certain, whatever the true explanation of the con- 
tradiction may be, that Whitney told a lie in 
the matter in which his word and Biddle's were 

Biddle's theory of bank-note issues was vicious 
and false. He thought that the business of a bank 
was to furnish a paper medium for trade and com- 
merce. He thought that this medium served as a 
token and record of transactions, so that the trans- 
actions to be accomplished called out the paper, 
and when accomplished brought the paper back. 
The art of the banker consisted in a kind of leger- 
demain, by which he kept bolstering up one trans- 
action by another, and swelling the total amount 
of them on which he won profits. There could 
then be no inflation of the paper, if it was only 
put out as demanded for real transactions. There- 
fore he never distinguished between bills of ex- 
change and money, or the true paper substitute for 
money, which is constantly and directly interchange- 
able with money, so that it cannot degenerate into 
a negotiable instrument like notes and bills. His 
management of the Bank was a test of his theory 
on a grand scale. The branch drafts were a spe- 
cial test of it. It was proved that they had none 
of the character of convertible bank-notes or money, 


but were instruments of credit, and, like all instru- 
ments of credit which have cut loose from actual 
redemption in capital, there was no more limit to 
their possible inflation than to the infinity of hu- 
man hopes and human desires. Only a few months 
after the congressional investigation, November, 
1832, the president of the Nashville branch wrote 
to Biddle : " Be assured, sir, that we are as well 
convinced as you are that too many bills are offered 
and purchased, amounting to more than the 
present crop of cotton and tobacco will pay; I 
mean, before all these papers are taken up." It 
does not appear that, in the spring of 1832, Biddle 
yet perceived the operation of the branch drafts, 
and it could not be said that sincerity required that 
he should avow a mistake to a hostile committee ; 
but his letter to Clayton, appended to the report 
of 1832, is meretricious and dazzling, calculated to 
repel investigation and cover up weakness by a 
sensational assertion. " The whole policy of the 
Bank for the last six months has been exclusively 
protective and conservative, calculated to mitigate 
suffering and yet avert danger." He sketches out 
in broad and bold outlines the national and inter- 
national relations of American industry and com- 
merce and the financial relations of the Treasury, 
with the Bank enthroned over all as the financial 
providence of the country. This kind of writing 
had a great effect on the uninitiated. Who could 
dispute with a man who thus handled all the pub- 
lic and private finance of the whole country as a 


school-master would tell boys how to do a sum in 
long division ? However, it was all humbug, and 
especially that part which represented the Bank 
as watching over and caring for the public. As 
Gouge most justly remarked, after quoting some 
of Biddle's rhetoric : " The true basis of the in- 
terior trade of the United States is the fertility of 
the soil and the industry of the people. The sun 
would shine, the streams would flow, and the earth 
would yield her increase, if the Bank of the United 
States was not in existence." l If the Bank had 
been strong, Biddle's explanations would all have 
been meretricious ; as it was, the Bank had been 
quite fully occupied in 1831-32 in taking care of 
itself, mitigating its own sufferings and averting 
its own dangers. 

No doubt the Bank was the chief sufferer from 
the shocks inflicted on the money market by the 
sudden and heavy payments on the public debt. 
Long credits were given for duties. When paid 
they passed into the Bank as public deposits. 
They were loaned again to merchants to pay new 
duties, so that one credit was piled upon another 
already in this part of the arrangement. Then 
the deposits were called in to meet drafts of the 
Treasury to pay the debt, and so passed to the 
former fund-holders. These latter next entered 
the money market as investors, and the capital 
passed into new employments. Therefore Ben- 
ton's argument, which all the anti-Bank men caught 
1 Gouge, 56. 


up, that the financial heats and chills of this period 
were certainly due to the malice of the Bank, is of 
no force at all. The disturbances were such, they 
necessarily lasted so long, and they finally settled 
down to such uncalculable final effects that all such 
deductions as Ben ton made were unwarranted. A 
public debt is not a blessing, but it is not as great 
a curse as a public surplus, and it is very possible 
to pay off a debt too rapidly. We shall, on two 
or three further occasions in this history, find the 
" public deposits " banging about the money market 
like a cannon ball loose in the hold of a ship in a 
high wind. 

While the committee was investigating the Bank 
the political strife was growing more intense, and 
every chance of dealing dispassionately with the 
question of recharter had passed away. In Janu- 
ary, Van Buren's nomination as minister to Eng- 
land was rejected by the Senate. 1 The Legislature 
of New York had passed resolutions against the 
recharter of the Bank. 2 This hurt Van Buren in 
Pennsylvania. Such was the strange combination 
of feelings and convictions at this time that Jack- 
son could demolish the Bank without shaking his 
hold on Pennsylvania, but Van Buren was never 
forgiven for the action of his State against the 
Bank. It illustrated again the observation made 
above, that the popular idol enjoys an unreason- 
able immunity, while others may be held to an un- 
reasonable responsibility. All Jackson's intensest 
1 See page 210. 2 2 Hammond, 351. 


personal feeelings, as well as the choice of the 
kitchen cabinet, now converged on Van Buren's 
nomination. The Seminole war grudge, hatred of 
Calhoun, the Eaton scandal, and animosity to the 
Senate contributed towards this end. 

Parton gives us one of Lewis's letters, which 
shows the wire-pulling which preceded the first 
democratic, convention. Kendall was in New 
Hampshire in the spring of 1831. Lewis wrote 
to him to propose that a convention should be held 
in May, 1832, to nominate Van Buren for Vice- 
President. He suggested that the New Hampshire 
Legislature should be prompted to propose it. 
Kendall arranged this and wrote a letter, giving 
an account of the meeting, resolutions, etc., which 
was published anonymously in the " Globe," July 
6, 1831. The "Globe" took up the proposition 
and approved of it. The convention met at Balti- 
more, May 21, 1832. John H. Eaton was a dele- 
gate to the convention. He intended to vote against 
Van Buren, for, although Van Buren had taken 
Mrs. Eaton's part, he had not won Eaton's affec- 
tion. Lewis wrote to Eaton that he must not vote 
against Van Buren " unless he was prepared to 
quarrel with the general." Van Buren was nomi- 
nated by 260 votes out of 326. The " spontaneous 
unanimity " of this convention was produced by the 
will of Andrew Jackson and the energetic discipline 
of the kitchen cabinet. It may well be doubted 
whether, without Jackson's support, Van Buren 
could have got 260 votes for President or Vice- 


President in the whole United States, in 1832. 
The " Globe " dragooned the whole Jackson party 
into the support of Van Buren, not without con- 
siderable trouble. The convention adopted an ad- 
dress prepared by Kendall, containing a review of 
Jackson's first administration. 1 

May 7, 1832, a national republican convention 
of young men met in Washington. William Cost 
Johnson was president. The convention ratified 
the nominations of Clay and Sergeant, and passed 
a series of resolutions in favor of tariff and internal 
improvements, and approving the rejection of Van 
Buren's nomination as minister to England. 2 

During the spring and summer Biddle took 
quarters in Washington, from which *ne directed 
the congressional campaign on behalf of the re- 
charter. He was then at the zenith of his power 
and fame, and enjoyed real renown in Europe and 
America. He and Jackson were pitted against 
each other personally. Biddle, however, put a 
letter in Livingston's 3 hands, stating that he would 
accept any charter to which Jackson woulcL con- 
sent. 4 " Jackson never fought for compromises, and 
nothing was heard of this letter. Jackson drew 
up a queer plan of a " bank," which he thought 
constitutional and suitable, but it remained in his 

1 Kendall's Autobiography, 296. 2 42 Niles, 206, 236. 

8 Livingston was on the side of the Bank. Hunt's Livingston, 

4 Ingersoll, 268. On the same page it is said that Biddle was 
talked of for President of the United States. 


drawer. 1 The anti-Bank men affirmed that Biddle 
was corrupting Congress. 

The charter passed the Senate June llth, 28 to 
20 c and the House, July 3d, 107 to 85. It was sent 
to the President July 4th. The Senate voted to 
adjourn July 16th. It was a clever device of theirs 
to force Jackson to sign or veto by giving him more 
than ten days. They wanted to force him to a 
direct issue. It is not probable that there was 
room for his will to be any further stimulated by 
this kind of mano3uvring, but he never flinched 
from a direct issue, and the only effect was to put 
him where he would have risked his reelection and 
everything else on a defiant reply to the challenge 
offered. Niles says 2 that, a week before the bill 
passed, the best informed were " as six to half a 
dozen," whether the bill, if passed, would be vetoed,* 
but that, for the two or three days before the bill 
was sent up, a veto was confidently expected. JThe 
veto was sent in, July 10th. 3 The reasons given 
for it were : (1) The Bank would have a monopoly 
for which the bonus was no equivalent. (2) One 
fifth of the stockholders were foreigners. (3) 
Banks were to be allowed to pay the Bank of the 
United States in branch drafts, which individuals 
could not do. (4) The States were allowed to tax 
the stock of the Bank owned by their citizens, which 
would cause the stock to go out of the country. 

1 Ingersoll, 283. 2 42 Niles, 337. 

8 Congress has chartered national banks as follows : 1791, 1815 
(vetoed), 1816, 1832 (vetoed), 1841, two bills, both vetoed, 1863. 


(5). The few stockholders here would then control 
it. (6) The charter was unconstitutional. (7) 
The business of the Bank would be exempt from 
taxation. (8) There' were strong suspicions of 
mismanagement in tlie Bank. (9) The President 
could have given a better plan. (10) The Bank 
would increase the distinction between rich and 

yhe bjj]], y l ^ s _ v ^!J^JJlD"??^u 1 ' r ' ' m tne Senate July 
13th, yeas 22, nays 19. The veto therefore re- 
mained in force ; and if the Bank was to continue to 
exist Jackson must be defeated. The local bank 
interest, however, had now been aroused to the great 
gain it would make if the Bank of the United States 
should be overthrown. The Jackson party thereby 
won the adhesion of an important faction. The 
safety-fund banks of New York were bound into a 
solid phalanx by their system, and they constituted 
a great political power. The chief crime alleged 
against the Bank of the United States was med- 

rllTnfl rn tli y nlitififi TY\ f" = TFrTf ^TTTTrffiT-- r f New 

York were an active political power organized 
under Van Buren's control, and they went into this 
election animated by the hope of a share in the 
deposits. The great Bank also distributed pam- 
phlets and subsidized newspapers, fighting for its 
existence. The Jackson men always denounced this 
action of the Bank of the United States as corrupt, 
and as proof of the truth of Jackson's charges. 

Jackson got 219 electoral votes; Clay, 49; 
Floyd, 11, from South Carolina, the nullification 

VOTE IN 1832 321 

ticket ; Wirt, 7, from Vermont. There were two 
vacancies in Maryland. Clay carried Massa- 
chusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Delaware, 
and Kentucky, and five votes in Maryland. For 
Yice-President Van Buren got 189. Pennsylvania 
would not vote for him. She gave her 30 votes to 
William Wilkins. Sergeant got 49 votes ; Henry 
Lee, of Massachusetts, 11, from South Carolina ; 
Ellmaker, 7. At this election South Carolina alone 
threw her vote by her Legislature. The popular 
vote was 707,217 for Jackson ; 328,561 for Clay ; 
254,720 for Wirt. Jackson's majority, in a total 
vote (excluding South Carolina) of 1,290,498, was 
123,936. In Alabama there was no anti-Jackson 



GENERAL JACKSON now advanced to another 
jfleveloj)ment of bis political philosophy and his 

political art. No government which has" felt itself 
strong has ever had the self-control to practise 
faithfully the non-interference theory. A popular 
idol at the head of a democratic republic is one 
of the last political organs to do so. The belief in 
himself is of course for him a natural product of 
the situation, and he is quite ready to believe, as 
he is constantly told, that he can make the people 
happy, and can "save the country" from evil 
and designing persons, namely, those who do not 
join the chorus of adulation. A President of the 
United Slates, under existing social and economic 
circumstances, has 110 chance whatever to play the 
role of Caesar or Napoleon, Jbut .he may practise 
the methods of personal government within the 
limits of the situation. Jackson held that his 
reelection was a triumphant vindication of him in 
all the points in which he had Veen engaged in 
controversy with anybody, and a kind of charier 
to him, as representative, or rather tribune, of the 


people, to go on and govern on his own judgment 

over an(T~agJun"sFeverj ; l>ody, including Congress 

-.^5 M . M .+.^*. Fiet .- fv >^jX f jmf *"** 4- -r---,~i, - 

His action about the Cherokee Indians, his attitud 
towards the Supreme Court, his construction of hi 
duties under the Constitution, his vetoes of inter 
nal improvements and the Bank, his defence o 
Mrs. Eaton, his relations with Calhoun and Cla} 
his discontent with the Senate, all things, grea 
and small, in which he had been active and intei 
ested, were held to be covered and passed upon 
the voice of the people in his reelection. 1 Adula- 
tion and success had already done much to make 
Jackson a dangerous man. Aftnr hi 

his self-confulftne ^ynrl aelf^will became tenfold 
greater. 2 Moreover, his intimates and confiden- 
tial advisers, Kendall, Lewis, Blair, and Hill, won 
more confidence in themselves, and handled their 

1 We may test this theory in regard to one point, the Bank. 
The Legislature of Pennsylvania, on the 2d of February, 1832, 
within eight months of the election at which Jackson got three 
fifths of the vote of Pennsylvania, instructed the senators and 
representatives in Congress from that State, by a unanimous vote 
in the Senate, and by 77 to 7 in the House, to secure the re- 
charter of the Bank. 

2 " The truth is, I consider the President intoxicated with 
power and flattery." " All the circumstances around him [when 
he came to office] were calculated to make him entertain an 
exalted opinion of himself, and a contemptuous one of others. 
His own natural passions contributed to this result." Duane, 
133, under date October, 1833. "There is a tone of insolence 
and insult in his intercourse with both Houses of Congress, espe- 
cially since his reelection, which never was witnessed between the 
Executive and the Legislature before." 9 Adams, Diary, 51 ; De- 
cember 12, 1833. 


power with greater freedom and certainty. " I 
do not believe that the world ever saw a more 
perfectly unprincipled set of men than that which 
surrounded Jackson at Washington." 1 It has 
already been shown in this history that they were 
perfect masters of the art of party organization, 
and that they had a strong hatred of the Bank ; 
but they had no statesmanlike ideas in finance or 
public policy, and they governed by playing on 
the prejudices and vanity of Jackson. 

Jackson's modes of action in his second .- .term 


were those of personal government. He proceeded 
avowedly, on his own initiative and responsibility, 
to experiment, as Napoleon did, with great public 
institutions and interests. It came in his way to 
do some good, to check some bad tendencies and 
to strengthen some good ones ; but the moment the 
historian tries to analyze these acts, and to bring 
\them, for purposes of generalization, into relations 
'with the stand-point or doctrine by which Jackson 
acted, that moment he perceives that Jackson acted 
from spite, pique, instinct, prejudice, or emotion, 
and the influence he exerted sinks to the nature of 
an incident or an accident. Then, although we 
believe in personal liberty with responsibility, and 
in free institutions ; although we believe that no 
modern free state can exist without wide popular 
rights ; although we believe in the non-interference 
theory, and oppose the extension of state action to 
internal improvements and tariffs ; although we 
1 John Tyler, in 1856. 2 Tyler's Tylers, 414. 


recognize the dreadful evils of Lad banking anjl 
IB U(3t listing currency ; and although we believe th 
the TJi) ion is absolutely the first political intere 
of the American people, yet, if we think that i 
telttgent deliberation and disciplined reason oug 
to control the civil affairs of a civilized stat 
we must say of Jackson that he stumbled alon 
through a magnificent career, now and then takir 
up a chance without really appreciating it, and lea 
ing behind him distorted and discordant elemen s 
of good and ill, just fit to produce turmoil and di 
aster in the future. We have already seen, 
some cases, what was the tyranny of his popularit 
It crushed out reason and common sense. v To th 3 
gravest arguments and remonstrances, the answer 
was, literally, " Hurrah for Jackson ! " Is, then, 
that a sound state of things for any civilized state ? 
Is that the sense of democracy ? Is a democratic 
republic working fairly and truly by its theory in 
such a case? Representative institutions are de- 
graded on the Jacksonian theory, just as they are 
on the divine-right theory, or on the theory of the 
democratic empire. 

Qne of the most remarkable modes of personal 
ruje employed by Jackson was the perfection and 
refinement given to the " organ " as an institution 
of democratic government. In the hands of Blair 
the " Globe " came to be a terrible power. Every 
office-holder signed his allegiance by taking the 
" Globe." In it both friend and foe found daily 
utterances from the White House a propos of 


every topic of political interest. The suggestions, 
innuendoes, queries, quips, and sarcasms of the 
" Globe " were scanned by the men who desired to 
recommend themselves by the zeal which antici- 
pates a command, and the subserviency which 
can even dispense with it. The editorials scarcely 
veiled their inspiration and authorization. The 
President issued a message to his party every day. 
He told the political news confidentially, and in 
advance of the mere newspapers, while deriding 
and denouncing his enemies, praising the adherents 
who pleased him, and checking, warning, or stimu- 
lating all, as he thought best to promote discipline 
and efficiency. When we say " he " did it, we 
speak, of course, figuratively. If it was Blair's 
voice, Jackson ratified it. If it was Jackson's 
will, Blair promulgated it. We have an instance, 
in a letter of Jackson to Lewis, August 9, 1832, 
from Tennessee : 

" With my sincere respects to Kendall & Blair, tell 
them the veto works well, & that the Globe revolves with 
all its usual splendor That instead, as was predicted 
& expected by my enemies, & some of my friends, that 
the veto would destroy me, it has destroyed the Bank. 

" I have just read the address of the nulifying mem- 
bers of S. Carolina to their constituents I hope 
Kendall, or Blair will criticize it well ; it is one of the 
most jesuistical and uncandid productions I ever read, 
and is easily exposed." l 

The South Carolinians thought that the limit 
1 Ford MSS. 


of proper delay and constitutional agitation had 
been reached when the tariff of July, 1832, was 
passed. In the year 1832 the nullifiers, for the 
first time, got control of South Carolina. The 
Legislature was convened, by special proclamation, 
for the 22d of October, 1832, a month earlier 
than usual. An act was passed, October 25th, 
ordering a convention to be held on the 19th of 
November. The Legislature then adjourned until 
its regular day of meeting, the fourth Monday in 
November. The convention met as ordered ; Gov- 
ernor Hamilton was president of it. It adopted 
an^ordinance that the acts of Congress of May 19, 
1828,""ancl July 14, 1832, were null and void in 
South "Carolina. These proceedings conformed to 
a frheory ot ffip Pfflr** n<a of nullification which 
the South Carolina doctrinaires had wrought out ; 
namely, that the Legislature could not nullify, but 
that a convention, being the State in some more 
original capacity, and embodying the " sovereignty " 
in a purer emanation, could do so. The theory 
and practice of nullification was a triumph of 
metaphysical politics. The South Carolinians went 
through the evolutions, by which, as they had 
persuaded themselves, nullification could be made 
a constitutional remedy, with a solemnity which 
was either edifying or ridiculous, according as one 
forgot or remembered that the adverse party at- 
tached no significance to the evolutions. 

The ordinance provided that no appeal from a 
South Carolina court to a federal court should be 


allowed in any case arising under any of the laws 
passed in pursuance of the ordinance ; such an 
appeal to be a contempt of court. All officers and 
jurors were to take an oath to the ordinance. 
South Carolina would secede if the United States 
should attempt to enforce anything contrary to 
the ordinance. November 27th the Legislature 
met again, and passed the laws requisite to put 
the ordinance in operation. Goods seized by the 
custom-house officers might be replevied. Militia 
and volunteers might be called out. A thousand 
stand of arms were to be purchased. 

A Union convention met at Columbia early in 
December. It declared itself ready to support the 
federal government. It appeared, therefore, that 
there would be civil war in South Carolina. The 
Union men were strong in Charleston and in the 
Western counties. 

Jacj^soji immediately took up the defiance which 
South Carolina had offered to the federal govern- 
ment. He ordered General Scott to Charleston, 
and caused troops to collect within convenient 
distance, although not so as to provoke a colli- 
sion. He ordered two war vessels to Charleston. 
He issued, December 10th, a proclamation to the 
people of South Carolina. It was written by 
Livingston, who, as we have seen, 1 had taken up a 
position against nullification more than two years 
before. He represented the only tariff State in 
the South, Louisiana. It has been asserted that 
1 See page 253. 


Jackson did not like the constitutional doctrines 
of the proclamation, which are Madisonian federal- 
ist, and not such as he had held, but that he l^t 
the paper pass on account of the lack of time to 
modify it. 1 There is nothing of the Jacksoni^n 
temper in the document. It is strong, moderate, 
eloquent, and, at last, even pathetic. 2 It is very 
long. The following passage is perhaps the most 
important in it: "I consider the power to annul a 
law of the United States, assumed by one State, 
incompatible with the existence of the Union, 
contradicted expressly by the letter of the Con- 
stitution, unauthorized by its spirit, inconsistent 
with every principle on which it was founded, and 
destructive of the great object for which it was 
formed." This proclamation voiced the opinion 
and feeling of the whole country, except the nulli- 
fiers in South Carolina and a few of their comrades 
in other Southern States. The dignified tone of 
the paper was especially satisfactory. It was the 
right tone to take to men who had allowed their 
passionate tern per "to commit them to unworthy and 
boyish proceedings, and who had sought a remedy 
for civil grievances in acts which made liberty 
and security impossible. Jackson found himself 
a national civil hero for once, and he enjoyed theT 

1 Lewis in 3 Parton, 466 ; Tyler's Taney, 188. Taney recorded, 
in 1861, that he should have objected to some of the doctrines of 
the proclamation, if he had been in Washington at the time. 

2 Jackson contributed a suggestion of the pathos. Hunt's 
Livingston, 373. 


plaudits of those persons who had detested him 
the most earnestly. He lives in popular memory 
and tradition chiefly as the man who put down 
this treason. But the historian must remember 
that, if Jackson had done his duty in regard to 
Georgia and the Indians, nullification would never 
have attained any strength. The Southerners were 
astonished at the proclamation. It seemed to them 
inconsistent, even treacherous. 1 The constitutional 
theories were not at all such as Jackson had been 
understood to- hold. They ascribed Jackson's atti- 
tude on this question to hatred of Calhoun. Old 
John Kandolph, who was in a dying condition, 
roused himself as the champion of State rights, 
although he had been a strong adherent of Jackson, 
and went through the counties of Virginia, in which 
he had once been a power, in his carriage, to try 
to arouse the people to resist the dangerous doc- 
trines of the proclamation, 2 and yet to uphold 
the Union. This southern dissatisfaction alarmed 
Jackson's managers. Lewis wrote to Ritchie of 
Richmond, Sept. 17, 1833 : - 

" I am very much in hopes he [Blair] will be able to 
convince you [Ritchie], and other southern friends, that 
the character of the proclamation has been greatly mis- 
understood, as well as the views of the President with 
regard to it." 8 

1 Hodgson, 173. Cf. Resolution of the South Carolina Legis- 
lature, 43 Niles, 300. Duff Green's Pol. Reg. vol. 2, passim. 

2 2 Garland's Randolph, 360. 
8 Copy in Ford MSS. 


December 20th, Governor Hayne of South Car- 
olina-issued a proclamation in answer to Jackson's. 
CaUnoun- resigned the vice-presidency, December 
28th. He was elected senator in Hayne's place. 
He bad J).eeu Vice-President for eight years. He 
now returned to the floor and to active work. 
He never afterwards took position in any party. 
He was an isolated man, who formed alliances to 
further his ends. South Carolina also remained 
an isolated State until 1840, when she voted for 
Van Buren and came back into the ranks. Cal- 
houn seemed to have lost the talent for practical 
statesmanship which he had shown in his earlier 
years. He involved himself tighter and tighter in 
spinnings of political mysticism and fantastic spec- 
ulation. Harriet Martineau calls him a cast-iron 
man, and describes his eager, absorbed, over-specu- 
lative type of conversation and bearing, even in 
society. 1 " I know of no man who lives in such 
utter intellectual solitude. He meets men and ha- 
rangues them by the fireside as in the Senate. He 
is wrought like a piece of machinery, set going ve< 
hemently by a weight, and stops while you answer. 
He either passes by what you say, or twists it into 
suitability with what is in his head, and begins to 
lecture again." He " is as full as ever of his nul- 
lification doctrines [1836], and those who know 
the force that is in him, and his utter incapacity of 
modification by other minds, . . . will no more 
expect repose and self-retention from him than 

1 1 Martineau, Western Travel, 148. 


from a volcano in full force. Relaxation is no 
longer in the power of his will. I never saw any 
one who so completely gave me the idea of posses- 

Jn his message of Mt 18^ flll tIackson said that the 
protective system must ultimately be limited to 
the commodities needed in war. Beyond this limit 
that system had already produced discontent. He 
suggested that the subject should be reviewed in a 
disposition to dispose of it justly. December 13th 
the Senate called on the Secretary of the Treasury 
to propose a tariff bill. December 27th, in the 
House, the Committee on Ways and Means re- 
ported a bill based on the Secretary's views. It 
proposed an immediate and sweeping reduction, 
with a further reduction, after 1834, to a '"hori- 
zontal " rate of fifteen per cent or twenty per cent. 
January 16, 1833, Jackson sent in a message, in 
which he informed Congress of the proceedings of 
South Carolina, and asked for power to remove the 
custom house and to hold goods for customs by mil- 
itary force ; also for provisions that federal courts 
should have exclusive jurisdiction of revenue cases, 
and that the Circuit Court of the United States 
might remove revenue cases from State courts. 
Calhoun, in reply to this message, declared that 
South Carolina was not hostile to the Union, and 
he made one unanswerable point against Jackson's 
position. Jackson had referred to the Supreme 
Court as the proper authority to decide the consti- 
tutionality of the tariff. The nullifiers had always 


wished to get the tariff before the Supreme Court, 
but there was no way to do so. The first tariff of 
1789 was preceded by a preamble, in which the 
protection of domestic manufactures was specified 
as one of the purposes of the act ; but this form 
had not been continued. The anti-tariff men tried 
to have such a preamble prefixed to the tariff act 
of 1828, but the tariff majority voted it down. 
Congress had unquestioned power to lay taxes. 
How could it be ascertained what the purpose of 
the majority in Congress was, when they voted for 
a certain tax law? How could the constitution- 
ality of a law be tried, when it turned on the ques- 
tion of this purpose, which, in the nature of the 
case, was mixed and unavowed ? l It was not, 
therefore, fair to represent the nullifiers as neglect- 
ing an obvious and adequate legal remedy. A 
grand debate on constitutional theories arose out of 
Calhoun's criticism of Jackson's message and pro- 
clamation. Calhoun, Grundy, and Clayton each 
offered a set of resolutions, 2 and a flood of meta- 
physical dogmatizing about constitutional law was 
let loose. As it began nowhere, it ended nowhere 
In these disputes, the disputants always carefully 
lay down, in their resolutions about "the great 
underlying principles of the Constitution," those 
premises which will sustain the deductions which 

1 The principle is covered fully by the decision in Loan Associ j 
ation vs. Topeka, 20 Wallace, 655 ; but the practical difficulty 
probably remains. 

2 43 Niles, Supp. 222. The debate is there given. 


they want to arrive at for the support of their in- 
terests. In the mean time the merits of the par- 
ticular question are untouched. To inform one's 
self on the merits of the question would require 
patient labor. To dogmatize on "great prin- 
ciples " and settle the question by an inference is 
easy. Consequently, the latter method will not 
soon be abandoned. 

,Onthe 21st of January, 1833, a bill for enfor- 
cing ihe "collection oi'Tll(J TBV811UJ PUb lep'oTted to 
tSejsejiafij. li gave ike PUWUJB uind uiiidu the pro- 
visions which Jackson had asked for. On the next 
day Calhoun introduced his resolutions : that the 
States are united "as parties to a constitutional 
compact ; " that the acts of the general govern- 
ment, outside of the defined powers given to it, 
are void ; that each State may judge when the 
compact is broken ; that the theory that the people 
of the United States " are now or ever have been 
united on the principle of the social compact, and 
as such are now formed into one nation or people," 
is erroneous, false in history and reason. It would 
only be tedious to cite the other resolutions offered. 
Webster was good enough lawyer to get tired of 
the metaphysics very soon. Hodgson says that he 
withdrew, defeated by Calhoun. 1 The appearance 
of the " social compact " as an understood and 
accepted element of political philosophy is worth 

The State Legislatures also passed resolutions, 

1 Hodgson, 174 


Massachusetts, Connecticut, Delaware, New York, 
Missouri, Tennessee, and Indiana pronounced 
against nullification ; North Carolina and Alabama 
against nullification and tariff; Georgia against 
the tariff, also that nullification is unconstitutional, 
and that a convention of the Gulf States should 
be held ; New Hampshire, that the tariff should 
be reduced ; Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Ver- 
mont, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, that the 
tariff ought not to be reduced. Virginia offered 
to mediate between the United States and South 
Carolina. 1 

The ...House wa fl g ,B|^B3ffe .y^JJ 16 fe"ff during 
January. February 12th, Clay introduced the tariff in the Senate, to supersede all 
other propositions and be a final solution of all 
pending troubles. Of all the duties which were 
over twenty per cent, by the act of July 14, 1832, 
one tenth of the excess over twenty per cent was 
to be struck off after September 30, 1835, and one 
tenth each alternate year thereafter until 1841. 
Then one half the remaining excess was to be 
taken off, and in 1842 the tax would be reduced 
to twenty per cent as a horizontal rate, with a 
large free list, home valuation, and no credit. 
Credit for duties worked very mischievously. An 
importer sold his goods before he paid his duties. 
The price he obtained contained the duties which 
he had not yet paid. Hence he was able to get 
capital from the public with which to carry on his 
1 8 Ann. Reg. 48. 


business. In the end perhaps he became bankrupt, 
and did not pay the duties at all. In 1831 a re- 
port from the Treasury stated the duty bonds in 
suit at $6,800,000, of which only 11,000,000 was 
estimated to be collectible. Clay's compromise, 
as first drawn, had a preamble, in which it was 
stated that, after March 3, 1840, all duties should 
be equal, " and solely for the purpose and with 
the intent of providing such revenue as may be 
necessary to an economical expenditure by the 
government, without regard to the protection or 
encouragement of any branch of domestic industry 
whatever." 1 

Webster objected to the horizontal rate, and to 
an attempt to pledge future Congresses. He was 
now reduced, after having previously made some 
of the most masterly arguments ever made for free 
trade, to defend protection by such devices as he 
could. Now he derided Adam Smith and the other 
economists. 2 He first paltered with his convictions 
on the tariff, and broke his moral stamina by so 
doing. Many of the people who have been so much 
astonished at his " sudden " apostasy on slavery 
would understand it more easily, if their own judg- 
ment was more open to appreciate his earlier apos- 
tasy on free trade. February 13th, he introduced 
resolutions against the compromise. 3 

The enforcing act passed the Senate, February 
20, 1833, by 32 to 8. On the 21st the compromise 

1 1 Curtis's Webster, 434, 455. 

* 1 Webster's Correspondence, 501. ? 43 Niles, 406. 


tariff was taken up in the Senate. On the 25th 
the House recommitted the tariff bill which was 
there pending, with instructions to the committee 
to report the compromise bill. On the 26th the 
latter was passed, 119 to 85. On the same day 
the Senate laid Clay's bill on the table, took up 
the same bill in the copy sent up from the House, 
and passed it, 29 to 16. jQjUkU&O*^ 4fcrase 
pn~~rr^Jitl(i anlnrningf till, 111 to 40. Thus the 
olive branch and the rod were bound up together- 
There was one moment, in January, when ex- 
Governor Hamilton seemed ready to precipitate a 
conflict, and when Governor Hayne seemed ready 
to support him ; * but the leading nullifiers deter- 
mined to wait until Congress adjourned. February 
1st was the day appointed for nullification to go 
into effect, but all action was postponed. The 
Legislature replied to Jackson's proclamation by 
a series of resolutions which charged him with 
usurpation and tyranny. 2 Jackson was annoyed 
by these resolutions, and made threats against the 
leading nullifiers in January. The Governor had 
summoned the convention to meet again on March 
llth. Thecompromise tariff was regarded as a 
substantial victory for the South. It became a law 
on March 3d, the day on which the tariff of July 
14, 1832, went into effect. The re-assembled con- 
vention repealed the ordinance of nullification,, 
passed another ordinance nullifying the enforce- 
ment act, and adjourned. It is not quite clear 
1 8 Ann. Eeg. 290. 2 43 Mies, 300. 


whether .the last act was a bit of fireworks to cele- 
brate the conclusion of the trouble, or was seriously 
meant. If it was serious, it strongly illustrated 
the defective sense of humor which characterized 
all the proceedings of the milliners. The gentle- 
men who had nullified a tax, and then nullified a 
contingent declaration of war, would probably, in 
the next stage, have tried, by ordinance, to nullify 
a battle and a defeat. Adams quoted a remark of 
Mangum, in 1833, that " the course of the southern 
politicians for the last six or eight years had been 
one of very great and mischievous errors. This is 
now admitted by almost all of them." 1 They 
threw away the grandest chance any men have ever 
had to serve their country. 

The compromise tariff settled nothing. The fact 
was that Claj had beendrrTenTby^ne rapacity of 
the protected interests, to a point from which he 
could neither advance nor recede, and Calhoun had 
been driven by the nullification enterprise into a 
similar untenable position. Benton says that Cal- 
houn was afraid of Jackson, who had threatened to 
hang the nullifiers. Curtis, on the authority of 
Crittenden, says that Calhoun, in alarm, sought an 
interview with Clay, and that Clay intervened. 2 
It is claimed that John Tyler brought them to- 
gether. 3 They met and patched up the compro- 
mise, by which they opened an escape for each 
ether. For ten years afterwards they wrangled, 

1 9 Adams, 58. 2 1 Curtis's Webster, 444. 

1 Tyler's Tylers, 458. 


in the Senate, over the question who had been in 
the worse predicament, and who won most, in 1833. 
Clay claimed that he rescued protection from the 
slaughter which awaited it in Verplanck's bill. 
Calhoun claimed that the compromise tariff was 
a free-trade victory, won by nullification. Clay 
said that he made the compromise out of pity for 
Calhoun and South Carolina, who were in peril. 
Calhoun said that nullification killed the tariff, and 
that Clay was flat on his back until Calhoun helped 
him to rise and escape by the compromise. The 
protected interests were as angry with Clay as if 
he had never served them. They accused him of 
treachery. He never gained anything by his devo- 
tion to protection. He was right at least in say- 
ing that protection would have been overthrown 
in 1833 if it had not been for the compromise 
tariff. 1 

Jackson's animosity towards the Bank, in the 
autumn ^J^fal^^iharvA the intensity and 
bull-dog ferocity which he always felt for an enemy 
engaged in active resistance. In the matter of 
the three per cents, the Bank gave him a chance 
of attack. In July, General Cadwallader was sent 
to Europe to try to negotiate with the holders of 
the three per cents for an extension of the loan 
for a year beyond October, the Bank becoming 
the debtor, and paying, if necessary, four per 
cent on the extension. The Bank, then, instead of 

1 See a speech by Clayton on Hugh L. White's action, October 
5, 1842 ; 63 Niles, 106. Parton, III. 478, has the same story. 


paying the debt for the government, desired to 
intrude itself into the position of the Treasury, and 
extend a loan which the Treasury wanted to pay. 
Its object of course was to get a loan at three (or 
four) per cent. This proceeding was obviously 
open to grave censure. The obligation of the 
Treasury would not cease, although the Bank 
would have taken the public money appropriated 
to the payment of the debt. Five million dollars 
were in fact transferred, in October, on the books 
of the Bank, to the Redemption of the Public 
Debt Account. It seems to be indisputable that 
the Bank, in this matter, abused its relation to the 
Treasury as depository of the public funds. Au- 
gust 22d General Cadwallader made an arrange- 
ment with the Barings, by which they were to pay 
off all the holders of the stocks who were not will- 
ing to extend them and take the Bank as debtor. 
The Barings bought $1,798,597, and extended 
$2,376,481. The arrangement with the Barings 
was to be secret, but it was published in a New 
York paper, October llth. October 15th, Biddle 
repudiated t~he contract, because under it the Bank 
would become a purchaser of public stocks, con- 
trary to the charter. Would he have repudiated 
the contract if it had not been published ? 

The message of 1832 was temperate in tone, but 
very severe against the Bank. The President in- 
terpreted the eagerness of the Bank to get pos- 
session of the three per cents as a sign of weak- 
ness, and he urged Congress to make a " serious 


investigation " to see whether the public depo- 
sits were safe. An agent, Henry Toland, was ap- 
pointed to investigate on behalf of the Treasury. 
He reported favorably to the Bank. The Com- 
mittee on Ways and Means also investigated the 
Bank. The President's message created considera- 
ble alarm for a time, and, at some places, there 
were signs of a run on the branches. 1 February 13, 
1833, Polk reported a bill to sell the stock owned 
by the nation in the Bank. It was rejected, 102 
to 91. The majority of the Committee on Ways 
and Means reported (Verplanck's report) that the 
Bank was sound and that the deposits were safe. 
On January 1, 1833, the assets were $80,800,000, 
the liabilities 137,800,000 ; leaving 143,000,000 to 
pay 135,000,000 of capital. The circulation was 
$17,500,000 ; specie $9,000,000. The local banks 
were estimated to have $68,000,000 circulation and 
$10,000,000 or $11,000,000 specie. The minority 
report (Polk's) doubted if the assets were all good, 
and hence doubted the solvency of the Bank. It 
referred to the western debts, and gave, in a supple- 
mental report, evidence of the character of these 
debts. The committee investigated the proceed- 
ings of the Bank in relation to the three per cents. 
The minority reported that they could not find out 
clearly what was the final arrangement made by 
the Bank, but it appeared that the certificates 
had been surrendered, and that the Bank had, 
by and through the former transaction, obtained 
i 43 Niles, 315. 


a loan in Europe. The majority said that the 
Bank had receded from the project, and that there 
was nothing more to say about it. 1 

October 4, 1832, Biddle informed the directors 
that the Bank was strong enough to relax the 
orders, which had been given to the western 
branches in the previous winter, to contract their 
loans and remit eastward. He then supposed that 
the arrangement with the Barings about the three 
per cents had been concluded. The western affairs, 
however, were at this time approaching a crisis. 
The supplementary report (Folk's) by the minority 
of the Committee on Ways and Means, March 2, 
1833, 2 contains conclusive evidence that the west- 
ern branches were in a very critical condition ; that 
there had been drawing and redrawing between 
the branches, and that Biddle knew it. The direc- 
tors had testified to the committee that they knew 
nothing of any such proceedings. Some of the 
most important points in evidence are as follows : 
September 11, 1832, the cashier of the branch at 
Lexington, Kentucky, wrote that he was enduring 
a run. Two hundred and seventy-five thousand 
dollars were sent to him from Philadelphia, Louis- 
ville, St. Louis, New Orleans, and Natchez. A 
letter from Biddle to the president of the Nash- 
ville branch, dated November 20, 1832, shows 
plainly that he knew that redrawing was going 
on. In a letter from the president of the Nash- 
ville branch, November 22d, the following passage 

1 Document E. 2 Ibid. 


occurs : " We will not be able to get the debts due 
this office paid ; indeed, if any, it will be a small 
part ; the means are not in the country." The 
same branch officer, in a letter of November 24th, 
plainly states that he had been forced to collect 
drafts drawn on him by the parent bank, and the 
New York, Baltimore, Washington, Richmond, 
Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Louisville, and Lexington 
branches, and that he could not prevent a protest 
save by redrawing on New Orleans. Again, No- 
vember 26th, he states that he had, within a year, 
collected drafts for a million dollars for the bank 
and branches, " which, with small exceptions, have 
been paid through our bill operations." The ma- 
jority of the committee of 1832-33 had interpreted 
the fluctuations in the amount of bills at Nashville 
as proof that, when the crops came in, the debts 
were cancelled. The minority show that these fluc- 
tuations were due to the presence of the " racers " 
at one or the other end of the course. It is quite 
beyond question that a mass of accommodation 
bills were chasing each other from branch to branch 
in the years 1832-33, and that they formed a mass 
of debt, which the Bank could not, for the time, 

March 2, 1833, the House adopted, 109 to 46, a 
resolution that the deposits might safely be con- 
tinued in the Bank. The reports of the committee 
had not been carefully considered by anybody. 

ft pfrjjfe jpiflgfinTij and 

men voted on it according to party, not according 


to evidence. Whatever force might be attributed 
to any of the facts brought out by Polk in the 
minority report, it does not appear that anybody in 
Congress really thought that the Bank was insolvent 
and the deposits in danger. His supplemental re- 
port bears date March 2d, that is to say, the day 
on which the House acted. Polk did not propose 
to withdraw the deposits. He wanted to avoid any 
positive action. McDuffie objected to this policy 
that, if Congress took no action, Jackson would 
remove the deposits on the principle that silence 
gives consent. 1 

The first instalment of the payment by France 
was due February 2, 1833. 2 The Secretary of the 
Treasury did not draw until February 7th. Then 
he drew a sight draft, which he sold to the Bank for 
$961,240.30. Congress, March 2d, passed an act 
ordering the Secretary to loan this sum at interest. 
The treaty of July 4, 1831, was unpopular in 
France, and the French Chambers had not passed 
any appropriation to meet the payments provided 
for in it. The draft was therefore protested, and 
was taken up by Hottinguer for the Bank, because 
it bore the indorsement of the Bank. The Bank 
had put the money to the credit of the Treasury, 
and it claimed to prove, by quoting the account, 
that the funds had been drawn. Hence it declared 
that it was out of funds for twice the amount of 
the bill. It demanded fifteen per cent damages 
under an old law of Maryland, which was the law 
i 44 Niles, 108. 2 See p. 217. 


of the District of Columbia. The Treasury paid 
the amount of the bill, and offered to pay the 
actual loss incurred. July 8, 1834, Biddle in- 
formed the Secretary of the Treasury that the sum 
of -$170,041 would be retained out of a three and 
a half per cent dividend, payable July 17th, on the 
stock owned by the United States. March 2, 1838, 
the United States brought suit against the Bank, 
in the federal Circuit Court of Pennsylvania, for 
the amount so withheld. It got judgment for 
$251,243.54. The Bank appealed to the Supreme 
Court, which, in 1844, reversed the judgment, find- 
ing that the Bank was the true holder of the bill 
and entitled to damages. 1 On a new trial the 
Circuit Court gave judgment for the Bank. The 
United States then appealed on the ground that a 
bill drawn by a government on a government was 
not subject to the law merchant. 2 The Supreme 
Court sustained this view, in 1847, and again re- 
versed the decision of the Circuit Court. 3 No fur- 
ther action was taken. 

In the spring of 1833, McLane was transferred 
from the Treasury to the State Department. He 
was opposed to the removal of the deposits by 
executive act, which was now beginning-to be urged 
in the inmost administration circles. William J. 
Duane, of Pennsylvania, was appointed Secretary 
of the Treasury. This appointment was Jackson's 

1 2 Howard, 711. 

2 Suppose that France had drawn on the United States for the 
sum due in 1787. 3 5 Howard, 382. 


own personal act. He had admired Duane's father, 
the editor of the " Aurora," and he declared that 
the son was a chip of the old block. In this he 
was mistaken. Duane was a very different man 
from his father. 1 He was a lawyer of very good 
standing. He had never been a politician or office- 
holder, but had shunned that career. Lewis says 
that he does not know who first proposed the re- 
moval of the deposits, but that it began to be talked 
of in the inner administration circles soon after 
Jackson's second election. In the cabinet McLane 
and Cass were so earnestly opposed to the project 
that it was feared they would resign. McLane 
sent for Kendall to know why it was desired to 
execute such a project. This was before McLane 
left the Treasury. Kendall endeavored to per- 
suade him. Cass finally said that he did not 
understand the question. Woodbury was neutral. 
Barry assented to the act, but brought no force to 
support it. Taney strongly supported the project. 
He was an old federalist, who had come into Jack- 
son's party in 1824, on account of Jackson's letters 
to Monroe about non-partisan appointments. 2 He 
was Jackson's most trusted adviser in 1833 : so his 
biographer says, and it seems to be true. Van 
Buren warmly opposed the removal at first. Ken- 
dall persuaded him. He seems to have faltered 

1 Parton obtained from William B. Lewis an inside account of 
the removal of the deposits. Duane wrote a full account of it, 
and there is another account in Kendall's Autobiography, but it is 
by the editor, and only at second hand from Kendall. 

2 Tyler's Taney, 158. 


afterwards, but Kendall held him up to the point. 1 
Benton warmly, approved of the removal, but 
was not active in bringing it about. Lewis op- 
posed it. 

The proceeding is traced, by all the evidence, to 
Kendall and Blair as the moving spirits, 2 with 
Reuben M. Whitney as a coadjutor. These men 
had no public official responsibility. They cer- 
tainly were not recognized by the nation as the 
men who ought to have a controlling influence on 
public affairs. They were animated by prejudice 
and rancor sixteen years old. Andrew Jackson's 
power and popularity, moving now under the im- 
pulse of the passions which animate an Indian on 
the war-path, were the engine with which these 
men battered down a great financial institution. 
The Bank had been guilty of great financial errors, 
but they were not by any means beyond remedy. 
The Bank of England, at the same period, was 
guilty of great financial errors. Blair and Kendall 
were not working for sound finance. Blair's doc- 
trine was that the Bank would use the public 
deposits as a means of corrupting the political in- 
stitutions of the country. If that were true, it 
proved the error of having a great surplus of public 
money in the Treasury, i. e., in the Bank. He 
said that the Bank would corrupt Congress. 3 In 
August Duane wrote : " It is true that there is an 
irresponsible cabal that has more power than the 

1 Kendall's Autobiography, 383. 

2 Kendall's Autobiography, 375. 8 Lewis in 3 Parton, 503. 


people are aware of." " What I object to is that 
there is an under-current, a sly, whispering, slan- 
dering system pursued." l In his history of the 
matter, written five years later, he says : " I had 
heard rumors of the existence of an influence at 
Washington, unknown to the Constitution and to 
the country; and the conviction that they were 
well founded now became irresistible. I knew 
that four of the six members of the last cabinet, 
and that four of the six members of the present 
cabinet, opposed a removal of the deposits, and 
yet their exertions were nullified by individuals, 
whose intercourse with the President was clandes- 
tine. During his absence [in New England] 
several of those individuals called on me, and 
made many of the identical observations, in the 
identical language used by himself. They re 
presented Congress as corruptible, and the new 
members as in need of special guidance. ... In 
short, I felt satisfied from all that I saw and 
heard, that factious and selfish views alone guided 
those who had influence with the Executive, and 
that the true welfare and honor of the country 
constituted no part of their objects." 2 Lewis gives 
a report of a conversation with Jackson, in which 
he (Lewis) tried to persuade Jackson to desist 
from the project. Jackson's points were, " I have 
no confidence in Congress." " If the Bank is per- 
mitted to have the public money, there is no power 
that can prevent it from obtaining a charter; it 
1 Duane, 130. 2 Duane, 9. 


will have it, if it has to buy up all Congress, and 
the public funds would enable it to do so !" " If 
we leave the means of corruption in its hands, 
the presidential veto will avail nothing." 1 The 
statements in Kendall's " Autobiography " are in 
perfect accord with these. It is perfectly plain 
who was at the bottom of this project, what their 
motives were, how they set to work, how they gave 
a bias to Jackson's mind, and furnished him with 
arguments and phrases. It is also worthy of the 
most careful attention that they and Jackson were 
novFlmsy "saving the country," holding in check 
the constitutional organs of the country, above all 
Congress ; and that they were proceeding upon as- 
sumptions about the motives and purposes of the 
Bank which were not true and had not even been 
tesjhseh nird. upon assumptions in regard to the 
character of Congress which were insulting to the 
nation. The Jeffersonian non-interference theories 
were now all left far behind. Jacksonian demo- 
c^5cy^ra:s approaching already the Napoleonic type 
of the democratic empire, in which " the elect of 
th. nation " is charged to protect the state against 
everybody, chiefly, however, against any constitu- 
tional organs. 

Qn .the first day of Duane's official life, June 1, 
1&33., Whitney called ^gn him, obviously in a cer- 
tain^junbassadorial capacity, and made known to 
him the project to remove the deposits from the 
Bafl& ancTlx) use local banks as depositories and 

1 Lewis in 3 Parton, 505 et seq. 


. A few days later Jackson started 
on a progress through New England. The recent 
overthrow of nullification had rendered him very 
popular. 1 No one knew of any new trouble brew- 
ing, and there was a general outburst of enthusi- 
asm and satisfaction that a great cause of political 
discord had been removed, and that peace and 
quiet might be enjoyed. Jackson was feted en- 
thusiastically and generally. Harvard College 
made him a Doctor of Laws. Adams said that it 
was " a sycophantic compliment." " As myself 
an affectionate child of our Alma Mater, I would 
not be present to witness her disgrace in conferring 
her highest literary honors upon a barbarian, who 
could not write a sentence of grammar and hardly 
could spell his own name." 2 Jackson was very ill 
at this time. 3 Adams wrote a spiteful page in the 
" Diary," alleging that " four fifths of his sickness 
is trickery, and the other fifth mere fatigue." " He 
is so ravenous of notoriety that he craves the sym- 
pathy for sickness as a portion of his glory." 4 
The low personal injustice which is born of party 
hatred is here strikingly illustrated. 

Duane did not accept the role for which he had 
been selected. He objected to the removal of the 
deposits. Jackson sent to him from Boston a long 
argument, written by Kendall, to try to persuade 
him. Jackson returned early in July. The ques- 
tion of the removal was then debated between him 

1 Quincy's Figures, 354. 2 8 Adams, 546. 

8 Quincy's Figures, 368 et seq. * 4 Adams, 5. 


and Duane very seriously, Duane standing his 
ground. It is evident that Taney was then asked 
to take the Treasury in case Duane should continue 
recalcitrant. Jackson left Washington on an ex- 
cursion to the Rip Raps without having come to an 
arrangement with Duane. 1 4 

In July rumors became current that the Presi- 
dent intended to remove the deposits. 2 August 5, 
1833, while Jackson was absent, Taney wrote to 
him, encouraging him to prosecute the project of 
removal, and thoroughly approving of it. It is a 
sv^opliaiiiic letter. 3 In August, Kendall went on 
a tour through the Middle and Eastern States to 
negotiate with the local banks, so as to find out 
whether they would undertake the fiscal duties. 
His first project seems to have been based on the 
New York Safety Fund system. He got no en- 
couragement for this. 4 To more general inquiries 
as to a willingness to enter into some arrangement 
he got a number of favorable replies. 5 Comment- 
ing on these replies, Duane says : " It was into this 
chaos that I was asked to plunge the fiscal con- 
cerns of the country at a moment when they were 

1 In May, 1833, Jackson laid the corner-stone of a monument to 
Washington's mother. On his way to the site of the monument, 
while the steamboat was at Alexandria, Lieutenant Randolph, who 
had been dismissed from the navy because he could not make his 
accounts good, committed an assault on the President, and at- 
tempted to pull his nose. Considerable political heat was excited 
by the extra legal measures taken to punish Randolph for his 
outrage. 44 Niles, 170. 

2 44 Niles, 353. 8 Tyler's Taney, 195. 
4 Document F, page 10. 5 Document F. 


conducted by the legitimate agent with the utmost 
simplicity, safety, and despatch." l 

Rives published a story, in 1856, in the " Globe," 
to the effect that, while Jackson was at the Rip 
Raps, where Blair was with him, a letter was re- 
ceived from Kendall saying that he had had such 
ill success that the project of removing the deposits 
must be given up. Jackson declared that the 
Bank was broken. Blair tried to soothe him, say- 
ing that it was politically dangerous, but not 
broken. Jackson insisted. He now had formed 
an opinion of his own. Better than anybody else 
he had seen through Biddle's plausible and sophis- 
tical reasons for desiring to postpone the pay- 
ment of the three per cents, and he had adopted a 
conviction that the Bank was financially weak. 
H^reaSor^^ alid brave, and 

that he never would have come to Washington to 
beg Jackson to defer the payment, if the Bank had 
not been so weak that he was forced to it. Rives 
added that Kendall, when asked, denied that he 
ever wrote any letter despairing of the removal. 2 

On Jackson's return he took up the business at 
once. Of course Kendall's negotiations could not 
be kept secret. Niles's " Register " for September 
7, 1833, contains a long list of extracts from differ- 
ent newspapers presenting different speculations as 
to the probability of the removal of the deposits. 
The money market was, of course, immediately 
affected. The Bank had ordered its branches to 

1 Duane, 96. 2 Hudson's Journalism, 250. 


buy no drafts having over ninety days to run. 
This was too short a time for " racers," considering 
the difficulty of communication. The western 
debts had now been considerably curtailed by the 
strenuous efforts which had been made during the 
year. In the cabinet, Duane was still resisting. 
The sixteenth section of the Bank charter gave to 
the Secretary of the Treasury, by specific desig- 
nation, the power to remove the deposits. 

By the acts of July 2, 1789, and May 10, 1800, 
the Secretary of the Treasury reports to the House 
of Representatives. John Adams objected to the 
position thus created for the Secretary of the Trea- 
sury. 1 At other times also it has caused com- 
plaint. 2 His position certainly was anomalous. 
His powers and responsibilities were in no consist- 
ent relation to each other. He was independent 
of the President in his functions, yet might be 
removed by him. He reported to Congress what 
he had done, yet could not be removed by Congress 
except by impeachment. Jackson now advanced 
another step in his imperial theory. He said to 
Duane : I take the responsibility ; and he extended 
his responsibility over Duane on the theory that 
the Secretary was a subordinate, bound only to 
obey orders. What then was the sense of provid- 
ing in the charter that the Secretary might use 

1 1 Gibbs, 569. 8 J. Adams's Life and Works, 555. 

2 4 Adams, 501. See a history of tbe Treasury Department in 
a report of the Committee on Ways and Means, March 4, 1834. 
46 Niles, 39. 


a certain discretion, and that he should state to 
Congress his reasons for any use he made of it ? 
Jackson's responsibility was only a figure of speech ; 
he was elected for a set term, and could not and 
would not stand again. As Congress stood there 
was no danger of impeachment. His position, 
therefore, was simply that he was determined to 
do what he thought best to do, because there was 
no power at hand to stop him. 

On the 18th of September the President read, 
in the meeting of his cabinet, a paper prepared by 
Taney, 1 in which he argued that the deposits ought 
to be removed. The grounds were, the three per 
cents, the French bill, the political activity of the 
/_J3ank, and its unconstitutionality. He said that 
he would not dictate to the Secretary, but he took 
all the responsibility of deciding that, after Octo- 
ber 1st, no more public money should be deposited 
in the Bank, and that the current drafts should be 
allowed to withdraw all money then in it. Duane 
refused to give the order and refused to resign. 
He was dismissed, September 23d. Taney was 
transferred to the Treasury. He gave the order. 
Taney told Kendall that he was not a politician, 
and that, in taking a political office, he sacrificed 
his ambition, which was to be a judge of the 
Supreme Court. 2 

Duane at once published the final correspond- 
ence between the President and himself, in which 
he gave fifteen reasons why the deposits ought not 
1 Tyler's Taney, 204. 2 Kendall's Autobiography, 186. 


to be removed. 1 One of them was, "I believe 
that the efforts made in various quarters to hasten 
the removal of the deposits did not originate with 
patriots or statesmen, but in schemes to promote 
factious and selfish purposes." The administra- 
tion press immediately turned upon Duane with 
fierce abuse. 2 

Thejrejnovalof the deposits was a violent and 
n^nfra^ry ofo^ even from Jackson's stand-point, 
as Lewis tried to persuade him. 3 The Bank had 
no chance of a recharter, unless one is prepared to 
believe that it could and would buy enough con- 
gressmen to get a two-thirds majority. If it had 
been willing to do that, it had enough money of its 
own for the purpose, even after the deposits were 
withdrawn. The removal caused a great commo- 
tion, even a panic. 4 Bank stock fell one and 
one -half per cent at New York, but it recovered 
when the paper read in the cabinet was received, 
because the grounds were only the old charges. 
The public confidence in the Bank had not been 
shaken by the charges, investigations, and reports. 
The Bank replied to the President's paper by a 
long manifesto, in which it pursued him point by 
point. 5 No doubt Biddle wrote this paper. In 

1 45 Niles, 236. 

2 In a letter dated June 7, 1837, Duane complained that he 
found himself completely " ostracized, disowned, outlawed 011 all 
sides." " My position is a warning to all persons to adhere to 
party, right or wrong." New York Times, May 13, 1894. 

* Lewis in 3 Parton, 506. * 45 Niles, 65. 

6 45 Niles, 248. 


order to defend the Bank in the matter of the three 
per cents, he resorted to the tactics noticed before. 
He said that there was heavy indebtedness to 
Europe in 1832, on account of the importations 
of 1831. He wanted to prevent an exportation of 
specie and give the country leisure to pay that 
debt. He said that the Bank was at ease, and 
would have kept quiet if it had considered only its 
own interests. Nothing less than the movements 
which involve continents and cover years would do 
for him to explain his policy. No motive less than 
universal benevolence would suffice to account for 
the action of the Bank. These pretences were, as 
similar ones almost always are, not true. 

The average monthly balance in the Bank, to 
the credit of the Treasury, from 1818 to 1833, 
was $6,700,000. In 1832 it was $11,300,000. In 
1833 it was $8,500,000. In September, 1833, it 
was $9,100,000.* Kendall reported to a cabinet 
meeting the results of his negotiations with the 
banks. One bank was objected to "on political 
grounds." 2 Twenty-three were selected before the 
end of the year. The chance for favoritism was 
speedily perceived. The first intention was to use 
the Bank of the Metropolis, Washington, as the 
head of the system of deposit banks, although no 
system was devised. In fact, the administration 
had taken the work of destruction in hand with 
great vigor, but it never planned a system to take 
the place of the old one. The Bank of the United 

1 Document H. 2 Kendall's Autobiography, 387. 


States had, of course, been compelled to devise its 
own measures for carrying on the business of the 
Treasury, so far as it was charged with that busi- 
ness. The Treasury was now forced to oversee, if 
it did not originate, the system of relations be- 
tween the deposit banks. January 30, 1834, Silas 
Wright made a statement which was understood 
to be authoritative. He said that the Executive 
had entered again upon the control of the public 
money which belonged to him before the national 
Bank was chartered ; that the administration would 
bring forward no law to regulate the deposits, but 
that the Executive would proceed with the experi- 
ment of using local banks. Webster expressed 
strong disappointment and disapproval, claiming 
that there should be a law. 1 March 18, 1834, 
Webster proposed a bill to extend the charter of 
the Bank of the United States for six years, with- 
out monopoly, the public money to be deposited in 
it, it to pay to the Treasury $200,000 annually on 
March 4th, none of its notes to be for less than 
$20.00. The Bank men would not agree to sup- 
port it. It was tabled and never called up. 2 April 
15, 1834, six months after the deposits were re- 
moved, Taney sent to the Committee on Ways and 
Means a plan for the organization of the deposit 
bank system, but it was a mere vague outline. 3 

1 45 Niles, 400. 

2 46 Niles, 52; 1 Curtis's Webster, 485; 4 Webster'* Works, 

8 46 NUes, 157. 


December 15, 1834, Woodbury sent in a long essay 
on currency and banking, but no positive scheme 
or arrangement. It was not until June, 1836, that 
the system was regulated by measures aiming at 
efficiency and responsibility. 

Taney desired that Kendall should be president 
of the Bank of the Metropolis and organize the 
system, but Kendall's readiness, which had not be- 
fore failed, had now reached its limit. The Bank 
of the Metropolis was then asked to admit Whit- 
ney as agent and correspondent of the deposit 
banks. The bank refused to do this, and the plan 
of making that bank the head was given up. 1 The 
banks were recommended to employ Whitney as 
agent and correspondent at Washington for their 
dealings with the Treasury. He was thus placed 
in a position of great power and influence. He 
did not escape the charge of having abused it, and 
an investigation, in 1837, produced evidence very 
adverse to his good character. Part of the cor- 
respondence between him and the banks was then 
published. From that correspondence it is plain 
that the chief argument brought to support an ap- 
plication for a share of the deposits, or other favor, 
was devotion to Jackson and hatred of the Bank 
of the United States. 2 It is not proved that the 
deposits were ever used by the Bank of the United 
States for any political purpose whatever. It is 
conclusively proved that the deposits were used 
by Jackson's administration, through Whitney's 
1 Kendall's Autobiography, 388. 2 52 Niles, 91. 


agency, to reward adherents and to win supporters. 
The first banks which took up the system also, in 
some cases, used the deposits which were given to 
them to put themselves in the position which they 
were required, by the theory of the deposit system, 
to occupy. Taney assumed that the Bank of the 
United States would make a spiteful attempt to 
injure the deposit banks by calling on them to pay 
balances. It was then considered wrong and cruel 
for one bank to call on another to pay balances 
promptly. Taney, therefore, placed some large 
drafts on the Bank of the United States in the 
hands of officers of the deposit banks at New 
York, Philadelphia, and Baltimore, so that they 
might offset any such malicious demand. Other- 
wise, the drafts were not to be used. The Bank 
took no steps which afforded even a pretext for 
using these drafts, but the president of the Union 
Bank of Maryland cashed one of them for 
$100,000 a few days after he got it, and used the 
money in stock speculations. 1 For fear of scandal 
this act was passed over by the Executive, but it 
led to an investigation by Congress. Taney was a 
stockholder in the Union Bank. 2 The Manhattan 
Company used one of these drafts for $ 500,000. 3 

1 Kendall's Autobiography, 389. Cf. Document H, page 339. 
It is well worth while to read these two passages together in 
order to see how much deceit there was in the proceedings about 
the removal of the deposits. 

2 Quincy's Adams, 227. He sold his stock Fehruary 18, 1834. 
Document M. 

3 Document H. 


Taney claimed the power to make these transfers. 
He referred it back to a precedent set by Craw- 
ford, 1 who, in his turn, when he had been called to 
account for it, had referred it back to Gallatin. 
The source of the stream, however, was not Gal- 
latin, but William Jones, Acting Secretary. 2 The 
baneful effects of the large surplus of public 
money are plain enough. 

At the session of 1833-34 the message alleged, 
as the occasion of removing the deposits, the report 
of the government directors of the Bank, which 
showed, as Jackson said, that the Bank had been 
turned into an electioneering engine. It was never 
alleged that the Bank had spent money other- 
wise than in distributing Gallatin's pamphlet on 
currency, McDuffie's report of 1830, and similar 
documents. Some might think that it was not 
wise and right for the Bank so to defend itself, 
since politics were involved ; but its judge was now 
the most interested party in the contest, the one 
to whom that offence would seem most heinous, 
and he insisted on imposing a penalty at his own 
discretion, on an ex parte statement of his own ap- 
pointees, and a penalty which could not be consid- 
ered appropriate or duly measured to the offence. 
He also charged the Bank with manufacturing 
a panic. Taney reported "his" reasons for the 

1 Document F. 

2 American State Papers, 4 Finance, 266, 279. Cf. 1 Gallatin's 
Writings, 80. It has been asserted that Hamilton used the same 
power. Ingersoll, 279 ; cf. 6 Hamilton's Works, 175. 


removal. He argued that the Secretary must dis- 
charge his duties under the supervision of the 
President ; that the Secretary alone had power to 
remove the deposits ; that Congress could not order 
t to be done ; that the Secretary could do it, if he 
jhought best, for any reason, not necessarily only 
when the Bank had misconducted itself. He put 
;he removal which had been executed on the 
ground of public interest. The people had shown, 
n the election, that they did not want the Bank 
rechartered. It was not best to remove the de- 
>osits suddenly when the charter should expire, 
ile blamed the Bank for increasing its loans 
from December 1, 1832, to August 2, 1833, from 
$61,500,000 to 164,100,000, and then reducing 
them, from that date until October 2, 1833, to 
$60,000,000. He said that the Bank had forfeited 
public confidence, had excluded the government 
directors from knowledge to which they were en- 
itled, had shown selfishness in the affair of the 
French bill, had done wrongly about the three 
>er cents, had granted favors to editors, and had 
distributed documents to control elections. He 
'avored the use of the local banks as fiscal agents 
of the government. 

December 9th the Bank memorialized Congress 
against the removal of the deposits as a breach of 
contract. A great struggle over the Bank question 
occupied the whole session. The Senate refused, 
25 to 20, to confirm the reappointment of the gov- 
ernment directors, who were said to have acted as 


the President's spies. Jackson sent the names in 
again with a long message, 1 and they were rejected, 
30 to 11. Taney's appointment as Secretary of 
the Treasury was rejected, to Jackson's great in- 
dignation. Taney was then nominated for judge 
of the Supreme Court, and again rejected. Mar- 
shall died in July, 1835. Taney was appointed 
Chief Justice, December 28, 1835. and confirmed, 
March 15, 1836. 

December llth Clay moved a call for a copy of 
paper read in the cabinet. Jackson refused it 
>n the ground that Congress had no business with 
it. The document, in fact, had no standing in our 
system of government. It was another extension 
>f personal government, by the adoption of a Na- 
>leonic procedure. The Emperor made known 
'his will by a letter of instructions to his minister, 
and this, when published, informed the public. 
I Jackson used his "paper read in the cabinet" in 
just that way. By publishing it he violated the 
secrecy and privilege of the cabinet, and made it a 
public document, but when it was called for he 
; fell back on cabinet privilege. 2 If Jackson's doc- 
itrine was sound, there would be modes of governing 
[this country without any responsibility to Congress, 
and the " cabinet," as such, would come to have 
recognized functions as a body for registering and 
publishing the rescripts of the President. It was 
a thoroughly consistent extension of the same doc- 
that Jackson, in his reply, in which he refused 
1 46 Niles, 180. 2 45 Niles, 247. 


to comply with the call of the Senate, profi 
his responsibility to the American people, and hi 
willingness to explain to them the grounds o: 
his conduct. Such a profession was an insult 
the constitutional organ of the mind and will of the 
American people worthy of a military autocrat, 
arid although it might have a jingle which would 
tickle the ears of men miseducated by the catch- 
words of democracy, nevertheless a people which 
would accept it as a proper and lawful expres- 
sion from their executive chief would not yet 
have learned the alphabet of constitutional govern- 

In January, 1834, Jackson sent in a message 
complaining that the Bank still kept the books, 
papers, and funds belonging to the pension agency 
with which it had hitherto been charged. The 
Senate voted, May 26th, 26 to 17, that the Secre- 
tary of War had no authority to remove the 
pension funds from the Bank. 

Clay introduced resolutions which finally took 
this shape : " Resolved, (1) That the President, in 
the late executive proceedings in relation to the 
public revenue, has assumed upon himself authority 
and power not conferred by the Constitution and 
the laws, but in derogation of both. (2) That 
the reasons assigned by the Secretary for the re- 
moval are unsatisfactory and insufficient." Ben ton 
offered a resolution that Biddle should be called to 
the bar of the Senate to give the reasons for the 
recent curtailments of the Bank, and to answer 


for the use of its funds for electioneering. 1 Feb- 
ruary 5, 1834, Webster reported from the Com- 
mittee on Finance in regard to the removal of the 
deposits. Clay's second resolution was at once 
adopted, 28 to 18. March 28th the first resolution 
was adopted, 26 to 20. April 15th, Jackson sent 
in a protest against the latter resolution. The 
Senate refused to receive it, 27 to 16, declaring it 
a breach of privilege. The main points in the 
protest were that the President meant to maintain 
intact the rights of the Executive, and that the 
Senate would be the judges in case of impeach- 
ment, but for that reason ought not to express an 
opinion until the House saw fit to impeach. The 
Bank charter provided that the Secretary should 
report his reasons to Congress. On the doctrine of 
the protest, however, one House of Congress could 
adopt no expression of opinion on the report , sub- 
mitted, because it must wait for the other. The ad- 
ministration press kept up truculent denunciations 
of the Senate all winter. The " Pennsylvanian " 
said : " The democrats never heartily sanctioned it, 
and now, having the power, should amend or get 
rid of it once and forever." 2 The New York 
" Standard " called the senators " usurpers." 3 

The debates of the winter were acrimonious in 
the extreme. Probably no session of Congress be- 
fore 1860-61 was marked by such fierce contention 
in Congress and such excitement out-of-doors. 
Chevalier, who was an acute and unprejudiced 
1 45 Niles, 332. * 46 Niles, 131. 3 Ibid. 147. 


observer, said that the speeches of the administra- 
tion men resembled the French republican tirades 
of 1791-92. They had the same distinguishing 
trait, emphasis. "Most generally the pictures 
presented in these declamations are fantastical de- 
lineations of the moneyed aristocracy overrunning 
the country, with seduction, corruption, and slavery 
in its train, or of Mr. Biddle aiming at the crown." 1 
The chief weapon of debate was emphasis instead 
of fact and reason. With an " old hero " to sup- 
port and the " money power " to assail, the politi- 
cians and orators of the emphatic school had a 
grand opportunity. There is also an unformulated 
seems "to command a great deal of 

faith, to this effect, that, if a. man. is only suffi- 
ciently ignorant, his whims and notions constitute 
k% plain common sense." There are no questions 
on which this dogma acts more perniciously than on 
questions of banking and currency. Wild and 
whimsical notions about these topics, propounded 
with vehemence and obstinacy in Congress, helped 
to increase the alarm out-of-doors. 

Senators Bibb, of Kentucky, and White, of Ten- 
nessee, went into opposition. Calhoun, also, for 
the time, allied himself heartily with the opposi- 

The Virginia Legislature passed resolutions con- 
demning the dismissal of Duane and the removal 
of the deposits. In pursuance of the dogmas of 
Virginia democracy, Rives, senator from that 

1 Chevalier, 61. 


State, and supporter of the administration mea- 
sures, resigned. B. W. Leigh was elected in his 

As soon as the resolution of censure was passed, 
Benton gave notice of a motion to expunge the 
same from the records. He introduced such a re- 
solution at the next session, and the Jackson party 
was more firmly consolidated than ever before in 
the determination to carry it. The personal ele- 
ment was present in that enterprise, with the desire 
for revenge, and the wish to demonstrate loyalty. 
March 3, 1835, the words " ordered to be expunged " 
were stricken from Benton's resolution, 39 to 7, 
and the resolution was tabled, 27 to 20. The 
agitation was then carried back into the State elec- 
tions, and " expunging " came to be a test of party 
fealty. Benton renewed the motion December 26, 
1836. The Legislature of Virginia adopted in- 
structions in favor of it. John Tyler would not 
vote for it, and resigned. Leigh would not do so, 
and would not resign. He never recovered party 
standing. 1 Rives was sent back in Tyler's place. 
This martyrdom, and Tyler's report on the Bank, 
mentioned below, made Tyler Vice - President. 2 
The vice of the doctrine of instructions was well 
illustrated in these proceedings. If the Virginia 
doctrine were admitted, senators would be elected, 
not for six years, but until the politics of the State 
represented might change. The senator would 
not be a true representative, under the theory of 

1 See his letter of reply : 50 Niles, 28. 2 Wise, 158. 


representative institutions, but a delegate, or am- 
bassador. It would be another victory of pure 
democracy over constitutional institutions. 

The administration had a majority in the Senate 
in 1836, but Benton says that a caucus was held 
on expunging. The resolution was passed, 24 to 
19, that black lines should be drawn around the 
record on the journal of the Senate, and that the 
words " expunged, by order of the Senate, this 
16th day of January, 1837," should be written 
across it. It was a great personal victory for 
Jackson. The Senate had risen up to condemn 
him for something which he had seen fit to do, and 
he had successfully resented and silenced its re- 
proof. It gratified him more than any other inci- 
dent of the latter part of his life. It was still 
another step forward in the development of his 
political methods, according to which j^is person- 
came more and mor^ jntin plflj n i I [rrriTfif*n1 
constitution^ ^frtitill* 1 1 * ^ tne 
oniir^fjy^iffi|M lae&jgjffa Thft flay after the reso- 
lution was expunged, leave was refused, in the 
House, to bring in a resolution that it is unconsti- 
tutional to expunge any part of any record of 
either House. 1 

1 There was a case of expunging in Jefferson's time. A reso- 
lution which had been passed contained a statement that certain 
filibusters thought that they had executive sanction. This was 
expunged. 1 Adams, 439. A case is mentioned in Massachu- 
setts. Quincy's resolution against rejoicing in naval victories was 
expunged. Ingersoll, 23. For a discussion of other precedents 
see the speeches of Rives and Leigh. 50 Niles, 168, 173. 


March 4, 1834, Polk reported from the Commit- 
tee on Ways and Means on the removal of the 
deposits, supporting Jackson and Taney in all 
their positions. He offered four resolutions, which 
were passed, April 4th, as follows: (1) that the 
Bank ought not to be rechartered, 132 to 82 ; (2) 
that the deposits ought not to be restored, 118 to 
103 ; (3) that the local banks ought to be deposi- 
tories of the public funds, 117 to 105 ; (4) that a 
select committee should be raised on the Bank and 
the commercial crisis, 171 to 42. The committee 
last mentioned reported May 22d.* The majority 
said that the Bank had resisted all their attempts 
to investigate. They proposed that the directors 
should be arrested and brought to the bar of the 
House. The position of the Bank seemed to be, 
at this time, that since the Bank charter was to 
expire, and the deposits had been withdrawn, any 
further investigations were only vexatious. The 
minority of the committee (Edward Everett and 
W. W. Ellsworth) reported that the committee 
had made improper demands, and that the instruc- 
tion given to the committee to examine the Bank 
in regard to the commercial crisis was based on 
improper assumptions. The Senate, June 30th, 
instructed the Committee on Finance to make 
another investigation of all the allegations against 
the Bank made by Jackson and Taney in justifi- 
cation of the removal. That committee reported 
December 18, 1834, by John Tyler. 2 The report 
1 46 NUes, 221, 225. 2 Document 1. 

REPORTS OF 1834 369 

goes over all the points, with conclusions favorable 
to the Bank on each. The time was long gone by, 
however, when anybody cared for reports. 

the removal of the depo- 

sjta. waagreaflv IB fifflggF r ififlr ^ 1ft public was 
thrown into a panic, because it did not quite see 
what the effect would be, It is untrue that the 


Bank made a panic, and it is untrue to say that 
there was no real crisis. The statistics of loans, 
etc., which the hostile committees were fond of 
gathering, proved nothing, because they proved 
anything. If the Bank loans increased, the Bank 
was extending its loans to curry favor. If they 
decreased, the Bank was punishing the public, and 
making a panic. As bank loans always fluctuate, 
the argument never slackened. The figures ap- 
pended to Tyler's report cover the whole history of 
the Bank. There are no fluctuations there which 
can be attributed to malicious action by the Bank. 
The root of all the wrong-doing of the Bank, out 
of which sprang nearly all the charges which were 
in any measure just, was in the branch drafts and 
the bad banking in the West. The loans increased 
up to May, 1832, when they were 70,400,000. 
The increase, so far as it was remarkable, was in the 
western branches. The operation of the " racers " 
is also distinctly traceable in the accounts of the 
parent bank and some of the branches. The effect 
of the general restraint imposed can also be seen, 
and the movement can be traced by which the 
Bank, drawing back from the perilous position 


into which it was drifting in 1832, got its branches 
into better condition, and improved its whole status 
from October, 1832, to October, 1833. It was 
this course which afforded all the grounds there 
were for the charge of panic-making. 

were removed. The loans were $42,200,000; 
Domestic excnange, $17,800,000 ; foreign ex- 
change, 2,300,000 ; specie, 110,600,000 ; due from 
local banks, $2,200,000; notes of local banks, 
$62,400,000 ; public deposits, $9,000,000 ; private 
deposits, $8,000,000 ; circulation, $19,100,000. It 
also held real estate worth $3,000,000. During 
the winter of 1833-34 there was a stringent money 
market and commercial distress. The local Jbaiiks 
were in no .condition fr> frfr* f"> ffjjh| Jf*^ 
They were trying to strengthen themselves, and 
to put themselves on the level of the Treasury 
requirements in the hope of getting a share of the 
deposits. It was they who operated a bank con- 
traction during that winter. It was six months, 
and then only by the favor and concession of the 
Treasury, before the local banks, .^pet banks " as 
they soon came to be called, could get into a 
position to take the place of the Bank of the 
United States. This was the " chaos " into which 
Duane, like an honest man, and man of sense, had 
refused to plunge the fiscal interests of the country. 
The administration, however, charged everything 
to Biddle and the Bank. Petitions were sent to 
Congress. Benton and the others said that there 


was no crisis, and that the petitions were gotten 
up for effect, to frighten Jackson into restoring 
the deposits. The proofs of the genuineness and 
severity of the crisis, in the forty-fifth volume of 
Niles's " Kegister," are ample. In January, 1834, 
exchange on England was at one hundred and one 
and a half (par one hundred and seven) ; capital 
was loaning at from one and a half per cent to 
three per cent per month ; bank-notes were quoted 
at varying rates of discount. 1 Delegations went 
to Washington to represent to Jackson the state 
of the country. He became violent ; told the dele- 
gations to go to Biddle ; that he had all the money ; 
that the Bank was a " monster," to which all the 
trouble was due. In answer to a delegation from 
Philadelphia, February 11, 1834, Jackson sketched 
out the bullionist program, which the administra- 
tion pursued from this time forth as an offset to 
the complaints about the removal of the deposits. 2 
Up to this time it had been supposed that Jackson 
rather leaned to paper-money notions. He now 
proposed, as an "experiment" (so he called it), to 
induce the banks, by promising them a share in 
the deposits, to give up the use of notes under 
$5.00, later to do away with all under $10.00, and 
finally to restrict bank-notes to $20.00 and up- 
wards, so as to bring about a circulation of which 

1 46 Niles, 133. 

2 Taney made the first official statement of the plan of the 
administration in a letter to the Committee on Ways and Means, 
April 15, 1834. 


a reasonable part should be specie. Jackson's 
personal interest had been enlisted in this scheme. 
He wrote to Lewis, while on a journey to Tennes- 
see, July 15, 1834: "supper is announced and I 
am hungry but I cannot forego saying to you 
that all things appear well in Virginia the Gold 
bill & a Specie currency are doing wonders " 1 
The notion was good as far as it went, but had 
precisely the fault of a good financial notion in the 
hands of incompetent men ; the scheme did not 
take into account all the consequences of distribut- 
ing the deposits as proposed. It persuaded the 
banks to conform to external rules about circula- 
tion, but, under the circumstances, these rules did 
not have the force they were supposed to have, 
and the bank loans were stimulated to an enormous 
inflation, which threw the whole business of the 
country into a fever, and then produced a great 
commercial crisis. For a short period, in the sum- 
mer of 1834, the currency was in a very sound 
condition. The Bank of the United States was, 
by the necessity of its position, under strong pre- 
cautions. The local banks, by their efforts to 
meet the Treasury requirements, were stronger 
than ever before. The popular sentiment, however, 
had now swung over again to the mania for banks. 
Each district wanted a deposit bank, so as to get 
a share in the stream of wealth from the public 
treasury. If a deposit could not be obtained, 
then the bank was formed- in order to participate 

i Ford MSS. 


in the carnival of credit and speculation, for a 
non-deposit bank could manage its affairs as reck- 
lessly as it chose. The deposit banks speedily 
drew together to try to prevent any more from 
being admitted to share in the public deposits. 
The mania ^ VainTrinff was finish that forr o1 J^* 
occurred at the subscription to the stock of new 
banks. 1 The favored few, who could subscribe 
the whole, sold to the rest at an advance. To be 
a commissioner was worth from $500 to $1,000. 2 
There was a notion, borrowed perhaps from the 
proceedings of the government of the United 
States in the organization of both national banks, 
that to make a bank was a resource by which a 
group of insolvent debtors could extricate them- 
selves from their embarrassments. The Tammany 
society being in debt, a plan was formed for paying 
the debt by making a bank. 3 When the great fire 
occurred in New York, December, 1835, a proposi- 
tion was made to create a bank, as a mode of 
relieving the sufferers. " To make a bank," said 
Niles, " is the great panacea for every ill that can 
befall the people of the United States, and yet it 
adds not one cent to the capital of the commu- 
nity." 4 Ttflfc/ffififtfcflfjfe}? pultiplication of banks, 
and of the scramble between them for the public 
deposits, was that an enormous amount of capi- 
tal was arbitrarily distributed over the country, 

1 42 Niles, 257 ; 44 Niles, 371. See some of these facts and 
the use made of them in Brothers's United States, p. 51. 

2 46 Niles, 188. 3 Mackeinzie, 70. * 49 Niles, 298. 


according to political favoritism and local influ- 
ence^and in entire, jisregara oi""Yhe industrial 
and commercial conditionT." I'liU publiu dubt was 
all^^-^OTtiaff'X 183 After that date the 
public deposits increased with great rapidity, and 
there was no occasion to spend them. The state of 
things was therefore this : an immense amount 
of capital was being collected by taxes, and then 
distributed to favored corporations, as a free loan 
for an indefinite period, on which they could earn 
profits by lending it at interest, jjq L mon St^ r bank, 
under the most malicious management, could have 
produced as much harm, either political or finan- 
cial, as this system produced lasted. 

Kovember 5, 1834, Secretary Wood bury in- 
formed the Bank of the United States that the 
Treasury would not receive branch drafts after 
January 1, 1835. This led to a spirited corre- 
spondence with Biddle, in which the latter defended 
the drafts as good, both in law and finance. 1 In 
the message of 1834 Jackson recapitulated the old 
complaints against the Bank, and recommended 
that, on account of its w high-handed proceedings," 
its notes should no longer be received by the Trea- 
sury, and that the stock owned by the nation should 
be sold. The session of 1834-35 was, however, 
fruitless as to banking and currency. January 
12, 1835, on Benton's motion, the Committee on 
Finance was ordered to investigate the specie 
transactions of the Bank. Tyler took fire at this, 

1 Document J. 


because it reflected on the report which he had 
just made. In view of subsequent history, it is 
worth while, to notice the profession of faith which 
was drawn from Tyler at this time. He said that 
he was opposed to any national bank on constitu- 
tional grounds, but that he was free from Jack- 
sonism, and that he wanted to be just to the exist- 
ing Bank. January 10th Polk introduced a bill 
to forbid the receipt of notes of the Bank of the 
United States at the Treasury, unless the Bank 
would pay at once the dividend which had been 
withheld in 1834. Bills were also proposed for 
regulating the deposits in the deposit banks. No 
action resulted. 

in tfc ^niirii nf Hff g iLir 1 '" c J x tlie 

war which (as he saiil) the Bank had wagecj. on 
the government for four years, as a proof of the 
evU effects of such an institution. He declared 
that the Bank belonged to a system of distrust of 
the popular will as a regulator of political power, 
and to a policy which would supplant our system by 
a consolidated government. Here, then, at the end 
ofThe Ba'n'ls wai% we^meet again with the second 
of the theories of the Bank which Ingham formu- 
lated in his letter to Biddle of October 5, 1829, 1 at 
the beginning of the Bank war. Ingham said that 
some people held that theory. The assumption 
that the Bank held that theory concerning itself 
had been made the rule of action of the govern- 
ment, and the laws and administration of the coun- 
1 See page 276. 


try had been made to conform to that assumption 
as an established fact. At the session of 1835-36 
an attempt was made to investigate the transac- 
tions of members of Congress with the Bank. It 
was abandoned when Adams declared that a simi- 
lar attempt in 1832 had been abandoned, because 
it cut both ways. 



Speculation and Inflation. Jn the spring o 

til ft ph*mnm QT1 ffl fl f 

marked. There was great 
monetary ease and prosperity in England and 
France, as well as here. Some important im- 
provements in machinery, the first railroads, 
greater political satisfaction and security, and 
joint stock banks were especially favorable ele- 
ments which were then affecting France and 
England. Tt^ft prinp of Cotton advanced sharply 
during 1834-35. Speculation seized upon cotton 
lands in Mississippi and Louisiana, and on negroes. 
Next it affected real estate in the cities at which 
cotton was handled commercially. The success of 
the Erie Canal led to numerous enterprises of a 
like nature in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Ohio, In- 
diana, and Illinois. Capital for these enterprises 
was not at hand. The States endeavored to draw 
the capital from Europe by the use of their credit. 
The natural consequence was great recklessness in 
contracting debt, and much " financiering " by 


agents and middle-men. The abundant and cheap 
capital, here and abroad, of 183536 favored all 
the improvement enterprises. These enterprises 
were, however, in their nature, investments, returns 
from which could not be expected for a long 
period. In the mean time, they locked up capital. 
It appears that labor and capital were withdrawn 
for a time from agriculture, and devoted to means 
of transportation. Wheat and flour were im- 
ported in 1836. 1 The land of the Western States 
had greatly risen in value since the Erie Canal 
had been open. Speculation in this land became 
very active. Timber lands in Maine were another 
mania. 2 The loans of capital from Europe in- 
creased month by month. The entire payment of 
the public debt of the United States had a great 
effect upon the imagination of people in Europe. 
It raised the credit of the United States. It was 
thought that a country which could pay off its 
debt with such rapidity must be a good country 
in which to invest capital. The credit extended 
to the United States depressed the exchanges, and 
gave an unusual protection to the excessive bank- 
note issues in the United States. Those issues 
sustained and stimulated the excessive credit which 
the public deposits were bringing into existence. 
The banks had an arbitrary rule that a reserve of 
specie to the amount of one third of the circulation 
would secure them beyond any danger. So long 
as the exchanges were depressed by the exportation 
1 50 Niles, 50, 74 ; 51 Niles, 17. 2 48 Niles, 167. 

SPECULATION, 1835-36 379 

of capital from Europe to America, no shipment of 
specie occurred, and the system was not tested. 
All prices were rising ; all was active and hopeful ; 
debt was the road to wealth. If one could ob- 
tain capital for margins, and speculate on differ- 
ences in stocks, commodities, and real estate, he 
had a chance to win enormous profits while the 
credit system went on. Large classes of persons 
were drawn to city occupations, exchange, banking, 
and brokerage, because these industries were most 
profitable. Cities grew, rents advanced, real estate 
rose in value. Down to October 1, 1836, the fol- 
lowing States had forbidden notes under $5.00 : 
New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Georgia, Lou- 
isiana, Indiana, Alabama, New Jersey, Maryland, 
North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, and Maine. 
It appears, however, that small notes of earlier 
issue were still in circulation, and the state of 
things which the legislation meant to bring about 
never was reached, so far as one can now learn. 

In the autumn of 1835, the money market be- 
came more stringent. This fact was charged to 
the pet banks and to fears of trouble with France. 1 
The pet banks had every interest to arrest inflation. 
If they were held to conservative rules, while the 
non-deposit banks about them were not so held, 
the former only left free room for the latter, and 
then the former had to receive the notes of the 
latter. In January, 1836, the rate of discount at 
Philadelphia was two per cent per month. 2 Banks 
1 49 Niles, 225, 281. 2 49 Niles, 313. 


were still being multiplied. 1 During 1836 prices 
continued to rise, speculation was active, rates for 
capital increased; there was complaint of a scar- 
city of money, and a demand for more banks. 
Governor Marcy, of New York, in his message 
for 1836, pointed out the "unregulated spirit of 
speculation " which prevailed, and he warned the 
Legislature against the fallacies involved in the 
demand for more banks. 2 In.April the best com- 
mercial paper was quoted, at New York, at thirty 
per cent to forty per cent per annum ; second rate, 
at one half of one per cent per day. 3 At Boston 
the rate was one per cent per month. Exchange 
on England, at New York, was one hundred and 
five (par one hundred and nine and three fifths), 
showing the current of capital in spite of the in- j 
flation. In May Niles said, " There is an awful 
pressure for money in most of the cities," 4 yet he 
also describes the unprecedented activity of busi- 
ness in Baltimore. 

{jand and Distribution. Injbhe first message 
after his reelection, in 1832, Jackson proposed, in 
regard to the public lands, that they should be 
sold to the new States and to actual settlers at a 
very low price. December 12th of that year Clay 
iis' land bill. 5 He succeeded in get- 

Iting it passed, but it was sent to the President 
within ten days of the end of the session. Jackson 

i 49 Niles, 435. 2 2 Hammond, 449. 

8 Evening Post, in 50 Niles, 134. 4 50 Niles, 185. 
5 See page 234. 


did not sign it. In December, 1833, he sent in a 
message stating his reasons for not doing so. He 
objected especially to the policy of giving away 
the proceeds of the lands while levying heavy 
duties on imports. The session of 1833-34 was 
fully occupied with the Bank question and the 
removal of the deposits. At the session of 1834-35 
Clay again brought in a land bill, but no action 
was taken. Eelations with France occupied the 
attention of Congress during that session, which 
was a short one. At the session of 1835-36 Clay 
introduced a bill to distribute the net proceeds of 
the lands, after taking out ten per cent for the ten 
new States. Calhoun introduced a joint resolution 
to amend the Constitution so that the surplus 
revenue could be distributed among the States. 
He also introduced a bill to regulate the public 
deposits. A bill to distribute the surplus revenue 
was also introduced. The land bill passed the 
Senate May 4, 1836, by 25 to 20. It was tabled 
in the House, 104 to 85, June 22d. The distribu- 
tion bill and the deposit bill were consolidated 
into one, and passed by the Senate June 17th, 38 
to 6. On the 20th of June, in the House, an effort 
was made to divide the bill, so as to separate the 
regulation of the deposits from the distribution, 
but the effort failed. The House then changed 
the plan of distributing the surplus to the States 
as a gift, into a plan for "depositing" it with 
them subject to recall. In this shape the bill 
passed, 155 to 38, and became a law by the concur- 
rence of the Senate and the President. 


The " Globe " l said that Jackson would have 
vetoed the bill as it came from the Senate. He 
thought that the plan of " depositing " the surplus 
was free from constitutional objections, but the 
" Globe " gave notice to all whom it might concern 
that the President would not sign any bill the effect 
of which would be to raise revenue by federal taxa- 
tion, and distribute the proceeds among the States. 
The distribution measure was one of those errors 
which are apt to be committed on the eve of a 
presidential election, when politicians do not dare 
to oppose measures which gratify class or local 
feelings or interests. Webster opposed distribu- 
tion, unless the land income could be separated. 
He said that taxes must be reduced even at the 
risk of injuring some industries. 2 It was provided 
in the bill that there should be in each State a 
deposit bank, if a bank could be found which would 
fulfill the prescribed conditions. Each of these 
banks was to redeem all its notes in specie, and to 
issue no notes for less than $5.00 after July 4, 
1836. The Treasury was not to receive, after that 
date, the notes of any bank which did issue notes 
under $5.00. It was to pay out no note under 
$10.00 after the passage of the act, and no note 
under $20.00 after March 3, 1837. If the public 
deposits in any bank should exceed one fourth of 
the capital of the bank, it was to pay two per cent 
interest on the excess. No transfer of deposits 
from bank to bank was to be made by the Secre- 
1 50 Niles, 281. 2 1 Curtis's Webster, 537. 


tary, except when and because the convenience of 
the Treasury required it. In that case, he was to 
transfer from one deposit bank to the next deposit 
bank in the neighborhood, and so on ; i. e., not 
from one end of the country to the other. As to 
distribution, the bill provided that all the money 
in the Treasury, January 1, 1837, in excess of 
85,000,000, was to be deposited with the States in 
the proportion of their membership in the electoral 
college, and in four instalments, January, April, 
July, and October, 1837. The States were to give 
negotiable certificates of deposit, payable to the 
Secretary or his assigns on demand. If the Secre- 
tary should negotiate any certificate, it should bear 
five per cent interest from the date of assign- 
ment. While not assigned, the certificates bore 
no interest. 1 f 

In his message of 1836 Jackson offered a long 
and very just criticism on this act. His objections 
were so pertinent and so strong that we are forced 
to believe that he did not veto only on account 
of the pending election. A number of doubtful 
States were " improvement States ; " that is, they 
had plunged recklessly into debt for canals, etc., 
which were not finished, and credit was declining 
while the money market was growing stringent. 
Those States were very eager (or, at least, many 
people in them were) to get the money in the fed- 
eral treasury with which to go on with the works. 
Jackson argued in favor of the reduction and 
1 50 Niles, 290. 


abolition of all the taxes with which the compro- 
mise tariff allowed Congress to deal, and he exposed 
completely the silly device by which the whigs 
tried to justify distribution, separating the revenue 
in imagination, and pretending to distribute the 
part which came from land. Jackson made a lame 
attempt to explain the recommendations which he 
had made in his early messages in favor of distri- 
bution. He gave a table showing the effect of 
distribution according to the ratio of membership 
in the electoral college as compared with that on 
the ratio of federal population. The small and 
new States gained enormously by the plan adopted. 
The best that can be said in excuse for distribu- 
tion is that the surplus was doing so much mischief 
that the best thing to do with it was to throw 
it away. Unfortunately, it could not be thrown 
away without doing other harm. We have already 
noticed the shocks given to the money market by 
the debt-paying operation. 1 The removal of the 
deposits took place before that was completed, and 
produced a new complication. The credit relations 
formerly existing towards and around the great 
Bank were rudely cut off, and left to reconstruct 
themselves as best they could. As soon as the 
new state of things had become a little established, 
there was an accumulation of a great surplus, nom- 
inally in the deposit banks, really loaned out to 
individuals, and fully engaged in speculative im- 
portations with credit for duties, or in speculative 
1 See page 315. 


contracts, payment on which was to be received in 
State bonds and scrip, or in still other indescriba- 
ble repetitions of debt and contract. The capital, 
when thus fully absorbed, was next all called in 
again, in order to be transferred to the States. The 
States did not intend to loan the capital ; they in- 
tended to spend it in public works ; that is, for the 
most part, considering the actual facts as they ex- 
isted, to sink it entirely. In one way or another 
these funds were squandered by all the States, or 
worse than squandered, since they served corrup- 
tion and abuse. In 1877 it was declared that the 
Comptroller of New York did not know what had 
become of the deposit fund of the State. For 
many years the commissioners of only nine coun- 
ties had made any report. The Comptroller asked 
for $15,000 with which to find out what had 
become of the $4,000,000 which was the share 
of New York. The fact that the funds were 
squandered was the least of the purely financial 
evils attendant on distribution. The effect on 
all the relations of capital, credit, and currency, 
that is, the effect on every man's rights and inter- 
ests, was the most far-reaching and serious conse- 
quence. 1 

On the 1st of June, 1836, 2 the deposit banks 
stood thus : capital, $46,400,000 ; due to the 
Treasurer of the United States, $37,200,000; 
due to public officers, $3,700,000 ; circulation, 
$27,900,000; other deposits, $16,000,000; due 
1 Bourne, Surplus Revenue of 1837. 2 50 Niles, 313. 


to other banks, 117,100,000. Contra: loans, 
871,200,000 ; domestic exchange, $37,100,000 ; due 
from banks, 117,800,000 ; notes of other banks, 
$10,900,000; specie, 110,400,000. It appears 
then that these banks owed the United States 
$41,000,000, while their whole capital was only 
$46,000,00-0 ; that is to say, the public deposits 
furnished them with a capital nearly equal to their 
own. If their " other deposits " had been all cash 
capital deposited, four elevenths of all their loan- 
able funds would have been public deposits, which 
would have been " called " by the act of June 23, 
1836. It is also noticeable what a large sum is 
due to and from other banks. The feeling that 
banks ought to forbear demands on each other 
seems to have been an outgrowth of the war 
against the Bank of the United States. The con- 
sequence was that the banks were all locked to- 
gether, and when the trouble came they all went 
down together. 

In December, 1836, Calhoun introduced another 
distribution bill to distribute any surplus which 
might be in the Treasury on January 1, 1838. It 
was finally added as a " rider " to an appropriation 
bill, providing money for fortifications. The House 
passed the bill and rider, but the Senate rejected 
the whole. Clay also introduced another land dis- 
tribution bill. Schemes of distribution were great 
whig measures down to Tyler's time. 

The first and second instalments of the distri- 
bution of 1837 were paid in specie, in January 


and April. The commercial crisis began in March. 
The banks suspended in May. The third instal- 
ment was paid in notes in July. Before August 
the Treasury, which was giving away 135,000,000, 
was in the greatest straits. Van Buren was forced 
to call an extra session of Congress. That body 
had no more urgent business than to forbid the 
Secretary to negotiate any of his "deposit" cer- 
tificates, or to call on any of the States for the 
money deposited with them. The payment of the 
fourth instalment was postponed until January 1, 
1839. At that date there was debt, not surplus, 
and the fourth instalment never was paid. Con- 
gress has never recalled any part of the other three 
instalments. Even when the civil war broke out, 
it did not venture to do this. The amount of the 
three instalments, 828,000,000, stands on the books 
as unavailable funds. The Secretary of the Trea- 
sury was obliged to draw his first three instalments 
where he could get them, so he drew them from the 
North and East, the banks of the Southwest being 
really ruined. The fourth instalment remained 
due from the banks of the Southwestern States. 
It was years before any part of it could be re- 
covered. The Southwestern States participated in 
the distribution of the three instalments. 1 

Specie Currency. Reference has been made 

above 2 to the plans of the administration for a 

specie currency, as a complement or offset to the 

removal of the deposits and destruction of the 

1 See table, 53 Niles, 35. 2 See page 371. 


Bank. 1 Benton, who was the strongest bullionist 
in the administration circle, was under an exag- 
gerated opinion of the efficacy of- a metallic cur- 
rency to prevent abuses of credit. A metallic 
currency is not liable to certain abuses, and it re- 
quires no skill for its management. In contrast 
with paper, therefore, it is surer and safer. It, 
however, offers no guarantees against bad banking. 
At most it could relieve the non-capitalist wage- 
receiver from any direct share or risk in bad bank- 
ing. In contending against plutocracy, democracy 
ought to put a metallic currency high up on its 
banner. The most subtle and inexcusable abuse of 
the public which has ever been devised is that 
of granting to corporations, without exacting an 
equivalent, the privilege of taking out of the cir- 
culation the value currency, for which the public 
must always pay, whether they get it or not, and 
putting into it their own promises to pay. The 
subtlety of this device, and the fallacies which clus- 
ter about it and impose upon uneducated people, 
are a full justification for men of democratic con- 
victions, if they say : We do not understand it Veil 
enough to control it. We cannot spend time and 
attention to watch it. We will not allow it at all. 
Such confession of ignorance and abnegation of 
power, however, is hardly in the spirit of demo- 
cracy. As a matter of history, the bullionist ten- 
dencies of a section of the Jacksonian party were 
at war with other parts of the policy of the same 
i The Globe in 46 Niles, 331. 


party, notably the distribution of the public de- 
posits in eighty banks, with encouragement to loan 

The opposition party, on the other hand, took up 
cudgels in behalf of banks and bank paper, as if 
there would be no currency if bank paper were 
withdrawn, and as if there would be no credit if 
there were no banks of issue. In their arguments 
against the bullionist party, they talked as if they 
believed that, if the public Treasury did its own 
business, and did it in gold, it would get possession 
of all the gold in the country, and that this would 
give it control of all the credit in the country, 
because the paper issue was based on gold. 

In 1834 the administration was determined to 
have a gold currency. The Committee on Ways 
and Means reported, April 22, 1834, 1 that it was 
useless to coin gold while the rating remained as it 
was fixed by the laws of 1792 and 1793. The coin- 
age law had often been discussed before. Lowndes 
studied it and reported on it in 1819 ; J. Q. Adams 
in 1820. In 1830 Sanford, of New York, proposed 
a gold currency with subsidiary silver. In the same 
year Ingham made a report, recommending the 
ratio 1 : 15.625. In 1831 a coinage bill passed the 
Senate, but was not acted on in the House. At 
the session of 183132 White and Verplanck, of 
New York, wanted silver made sole money ^ On 
account of the difficulty and delicacy of the sub- 
ject no action had been reached. In 1834 a new 
1 46 Niles, 159. 


interest came in. The gold product of the South- 
ern Alleghanies was increasing. In 1832 there 
came to the mint from that region $678,000 value of 
gold, and in 1833 1868,000. There was a protec- 
tionist movement in behalf of gold, the interest of 
which was that gold should supplant silver, to which 
end an incorrect rating was desired. 1 By the laws 
of 1792 and 1793 the gold eagle weighed 270 grains 
and was ^ fine. The silver dollar weighed 416 
grains and was ^||| fine, giving a ratio of 1 : 15. 
The market x ratio was, from 1792 to 1830, about 
1 : 15.6. Therefore gold was not money, but mer- 
chandise. From 1828 to 1833 the average premium 
on gold at Philadelphia was 4| per cent. 2 The 
reports before Congress, in 1834, showed that the 
real ratio was between 1 : 15.6 and 1 : 15.8. The 
mint put 1 : 15.8 as the highest ratio admissible. 
Duncan, of Illinois, in a speech, showed that the 
ratio since 1821 had been, on an average, 1 : 15.625. 3 
These authorities were all disregarded. 

The administration politicians had determined to 
have gold as a matter of taste, and the southern 
gold interest wanted it. The law of June 28, 1834, 
made the gold eagle weigh 258 grains, of which 
232 grains were to be pure ; fineness, .8992. The 
silver dollar was unaltered. The ratio of gold to 
silver, by this law, was therefore 1 : 16.002. The 
old eagles were worth in the new ones $10.681, or 
old gold coins were worth 94.827 cents per penny- 
weight in the new. Taking gold to silver at 

1 Raguet, 236. 2 Raguet, 250. 8 47 Niles, 29. 


1 : 15.625, an old silver dollar was worth 11.024 in 
the new gold one, and as the silver dollar had 
been the standard of prices and contracts, and the 
new gold one now was such, the money of account 
had been depreciated 2^ per cent. In the new 
standard, a pound sterling was worth, metal for 
metal, $4.87073 ; and if the old arbitrary par, 1 = 
$4.44-|, were 100, the true par of exchange would 
be 109.59. Of course the supposed gain to the 
gold producers from the incorrect rating was a 
pure delusion. They got no more goods for their 
gold than they would have got before, save in so 
far as the United States added some small incre- 
ment to the previous demand in the whole world 
for gold. The bullion brokers won by exchan- 
ging gold coins for silver coins and exporting the 

In December, 1834, Woodbury, who had become 
Secretary of the Treasury, gave the following sta- 
tistics of the circulation on December 1st: local 
bank paper, from 157,000,000 to $68,000,000; 
Bank of the United States paper, 116,000,000; 
gold, $4,000,000; silver, $16,000,000; total ac- 
tive circulation per head, $7.00. In bank : specie, 
$18,250,000 ; paper, $35,000,000 ; grand total per 
head, $10. OO. 1 The currency was then in a very 
sound condition. 2 

The bank paper increased before the gold could 
be brought into circulation, and the gold currency 
never was made a fact. Silver rose to a premium, 
1 Document K, p. 64. 2 See page 372. 


and was melted or exported. 1 The new mint law 
therefore produced the inconvenience of driving 
out silver just when the administration was trying 
to abolish small notes. A gold dollar had been 
proposed in the new law, but the provision for it 
was stricken out. The silver dollars then on hand 
appear to have been all clipped or worn. 2 The 
first which had been coined since 1805 were coined 
in 1836. 3 They could not, however, be kept in cir- 
culation. By the act of January 18, 1837, two 
tenths of a grain were added to the pure contents 
of the eagle. This made the fineness just .900. 
The pure contents of the silver dollar were left 
unaltered, but the gross weight was reduced to 
412J grains, so that the fineness of this coin also 
was .900. The ratio of the metals in the coinage 
was then 1 : 15.988. One pound sterling was then 
worth 14.8665, or, if $4.44f be assumed 100, par of 
exchange was 109|. As soon as the crisis broke 
out, in 1837, all specie disappeared, and notes and 
tickets for the smallest denominations came into 

At the session of 1835-36 Benton tried to get a 
resolution passed that nothing but gold or silver 
should be taken for public lands. He did not suc- 
ceed. After Congress adjourned, July 11, 1836, 
the Secretary of the Treasury issued, by the Presi- 
dent's order, a circular to all the land offices, known 
afterwards as the " Specie Circular," ordering that 
only gold, or silver, or land scrip should be received 
1 47 Niles, 147. 2 37 Niles, 393. 8 51 Niles, 241. 


for public lands. The occasion for this order was 
serious. The sales of public lands were increasing 
at an extraordinary rate. Lands were sold for 
14,800,000 in 1834; for $14,700,000 in 1835; 
for $24,800,000 in 1836. The receipts for the 
lands consisted largely of notes of irresponsible 
banks. Land speculators organized a " bank," got 
it appointed a deposit bank if they could, issued 
notes, borrowed them and bought land ; the notes 
were deposited ; they borrowed them again, and so 
on indefinitely. The guarantees required of the 
deposit banks were idle against such a scheme. 
There was, of course, little specie in the West oil 
account of the flood of paper there. The circular 
caused inconvenience, and bad temper on the part 
of those who were checked in their transactions. 
It also caused trouble and expense in transporting 
specie from the East, and it no doubt made a de- 
mand for specie in the East against the banks 
there. In the existing state of the eastern banks 
this demand was probably just the touch needed 
to push down the rickety pretense of solvency which 
they were keeping up. Specie could not be drawn 
in from Europe, except by a great fall in prices 
and a large contraction of the currency. Either 
through demand for specie or fall in prices, the in- 
flated currency must collapse, and the crisis was at 
hand. Moreover, the banks were under notice to 
surrender, on January 1st, one fourth of the public 
deposits. Thousands of people who were carrying 
commodities or property for a rise, or who were en- 


gaged in enterprises, to finish which they depended 
on bank loans, found themselves arrested by the 
exorbitant rate for loans. The speculative period 
in England had also run its course, and the infla- 
tion here could no longer be sustained by borrow- 
ing there. From all these facts, it is plain that 
the specie circular may have played the role of 
the spark which produces an explosion, when all 
the conditions and materials have been prepared ; 
but those who called the circular the cause of the 
crisis made a mistake which is only too common in 
the criticism of economic events. A similar cir- 
cular was issued in Adams's administration, which 
had hardly been noticed. 1 There was a great deal 
of outcry against the President for high-handed 
proceedings in this matter, but ' without reason. 
There were only two forms of currency which were 
at this time by law receivable for lands, specie 
and notes of specie value. 2 The notes which were 
being received in the West were not of specie 

A bill to annul the specie circular passed the 
Senate, 41 to 5, and the House, 143 to 59. The 
President sent it to the State Department at 11.45 
p. M., March 3, 1837, and filed his reasons for not 
signing it, it having been sent to him less than ten 
days before the end of the session. His reason for 
not signing the bill was that it was obscure. 

1 7 Adams, 427. 

2 Report by Silas Wright, May 16, 1838, with history of the 
laws about currency receivable at the Treasury, 55 Niles, 106. 


The End of the Bank of the United States. 
The charter of the Bank of the United States was 
to expire March 3, 1836. The history of the in- 
ternal affairs of the Bank, after Tyler's report in 
1834, was not known to the public until 1841, 
when committees of the stockholders published re- 
ports, from which we are able to state the internal 
history of the Bank in its true historical connection. 
March 6, 1835, by a resolution of the directors, 
the exchange committee was directed to loan the 
capital of the Bank, so fast as it should be released, 
on call, on stock collateral. The exchange com- 
mittee, from this time on, secured entire control of 
the Bank. During 'the year 1835, branches were 
sold for bonds having from one to five years to 
run. Down to November, fifteen branches had 
been sold. 1 In November, projects began to be 
talked about for getting a State charter from 
Pennsylvania. 2 There was a great deal of jealousy 
at this time between New York and Philadelphia. 
There was a proposition for a great fifty-million- 
dollar bank at New York, and it seemed that if 
Philadelphia lost her bank, and New York got 
one, the financial hegemony would be permanently 
transferred. In December, 1835, after the great 
fire in New York, the Bank of the United States 
was asked to give aid. It did so by opening credits 
for 2,000,000 in favor of the insurance companies. 3 

The act of the Pennsylvania Legislature, by 
which the United States Bank of Pennsylvania 

i 49 Niles, 182. 2 49 Niles, 162. 49 Niles, 307. 


was chartered, is, on its face, a piece of corrupt 
legislation. Its corruption was addressed to the 
people of the State, not to private individuals. It 
comprised three projects in an obvious log-rolling 
combination, remission of taxes, public improve- 
ments, and bank charter. The Bank was char- 
tered for thirty years. 1 It was to pay a bonus of 
$2,500,000, pay 8100,000 per year for twenty 
years for schools, loan the State not over a mil- 
lion a year in temporary loans at four per cent, 
and subscribe 640,000 to railroads and turnpikes. 
Personal taxes were repealed by other sections of 
the bill, and $1,368,147 were appropriated, out of 
the Bank bonus, for various canals and turnpikes. 
Either this bill was corruptly put together to win 
strength by enlisting local and personal interests 
in favor of it, or else the Pennsylvanians, having 
got their big Bank to themselves, set to work to 
plunder it. The charter passed the State Senate, 
19 to 12, and the House, 57 to 30. 2 Inasmuch as 
the democrats had a majority in the Senate, it was 
charged that private corruption had passed the 
bill. An investigation resulted in nothing. There 
was found, in 1841, an entry, of about the date of 
the charter, of $400,000 expenditure, vouchers for 
which could not be produced. 3 Biddle represented 
the case as if the proposition that the State should 
charter the Bank had originated with leading mem- 
bers of the Legislature, who asked the Bank if it 

1 49 Mies, 377, 396. 2 49 Niles, 434. 

8 Second report, 1841, 60 Niles, 202. 


would accept a State charter. 1 The act was dated 
February 18, 1836. The Bank accepted the char- 
ter, and presented a service of plate to Biddle. 2 

In the story of the Bank war, which has been 
given in the preceding pages, the reader has per- 
ceived that the writer does not believe that Jack- 
son's administration had a case against the Bank, 
or that the charges it made were proved. To say 
this is to say that Jackson's administration un- 
justly, passionately, ignorantly, and without regard 
to tr,uth, assailed a great and valuable financial 
institution, and calumniated its management. Such 
was the opinion of people of that generation, at 
least until March 3, 1836. Jackson's charges 
against the Bank were held to be not proved. The 
effect of them naturally was to make confidence in 
the Bank blind and deaf. In January, 1836, when 
it was expected that the Bank would wind up in 
two months, its stock stood at 116. For four years 
afterwards, nothing seemed able to destroy public 
confidence in the Bank. One thing alone suggests 
a doubt, and makes one hold back from the adop- 
tion of a positive judgment in favor of the Bank, 
even down to the end of its national charter : 
that is, a doubt of Biddle' s sincerity. If he was 
not sincere, we have no measure for the degree of 
misrepresentation there may have been in his plau- 
sible statements and explanations, or for how much 
may have been hidden under the financial exposi- 
tions he was so fond of making, and which were, 
A Biddle to Adams, 51 Niles, 230. 2 49 Niles, 441. 


like the expositions of a juggler, meant to mystify 
the audience still more. 

The final catastrophe of the Bank has always 
affected the judgment which all students of its 
history have formed of the merits of its struggle 
with Jackson. The Jackson men always claimed 
that the end proved that Jackson and his coterie 
were right all the time. This has probably been 
the general verdict. The whigs felt the weight of 
the inference, and they tried to distinguish between 
the Bank of the United States and the United 
States Bank of Pennsylvania. A little reflection 
will show that both these views are erroneous. A 
bank may go on well and be sound for twenty 
years, and then go wrong. It may make mistakes 
and recover, and then make more mistakes and 
perish. We must go by the facts all the way 
along. The State bank and the national bank of 
the United States had a continuous, an integral 
life. The attempt to save one and condemn the 
other, aside from an investigation of the merits, is 
a partisan proceeding. It is not sound historically 
or financially. We have now reached as just an 
opinion as we can form about the Bank up to the 
time of its State charter. 

The State Bank started on its career under very 
bad auspices. It never threw off the suspicion 
which attached to its legislative birth. It was too 
large for its new sphere, yet pride prevented its 
reduction. It had other aims than to win profits 
by sound banking. It wanted to prove itself 


necessary, or to show itself a public benefactor, or 
to sustain the rivalry of Philadelphia with New 
York. Biddle, freed from the restraints of the 
old organization, launched out into sensational 
banking, and tested his theories of banking to the 
utmost. There is scarcely anything vicious and 
unsound in banking which the great Bank did not 
illustrate during the next five years. Its officers 
plundered it. Its end was so ignominious that no 
one wanted to remember that he had ever believed 
in it. 

On the 1st of February, 1836, the account of 
the Bank l showed a surplus of 17,800,000, which 
was expected to pay off the bonus, notes, etc. 
There were 120,000,000 loaned on stocks, and 
there was the State bonus, the government stock, 
and the circulation of the old bank to be paid. 
New stock was sold to pay off the government 
stock. 1,000,000 were borrowed in London, 
and 12,500,000 francs in Paris. 2 Jaudon was sent 
to England as agent of the Bank. In May, the 
money market at New York being very stringent, 
the Bank was asked for aid, which it gave. 3 By 
an act of June 15, 1836, Congress repealed the 
14th section of the Bank charter. This put an 
end to the receipt of the notes of the old Bank by 
the Treasury, and crippled the circulation of the 
Bank. In October there was a report that the 
Bank would surrender its State charter if it could 

i 60 Niles, 106. 2 First report, 1841, 60 Niles, 105, 

8 50 Niles, 267. 


get back its bonus. 1 In that same month, how- 
ever, Biddle wrote another letter to Adams to 
show the wrong of trying to repeal the State char- 
ter. June 23d, Congress authorized the Secretary 
of the Treasury to treat with the Bank for the 
payment of the government stock. No agreement 
was reached, but, February 25, 1837, the Bank 
sent a memorial to the Speaker, in which it offered 
to pay off the public shares, at $115.58 per share, 
in four instalments, September, 1837-38-39-40. 
This proposition was accepted, March 3, 1837, and 
the instalments were all paid. 

In his message, 1836, Jackson discharged a last 
broadside at the Bank. He seemed to be as angry 
that the Bank had escaped annihilation as he was 
in 1818 that Billy Bowlegs got across the Suwanee 
river. He complained that the Bank had not paid 
off the public stock, and was reissuing its old notes. 
This latter proceeding was stopped by an act of 
July 6, 1838. The Bank failed three times during 
the years 'of commercial distress which followed, 
namely, May 10, 1837, with all the other banks ; 
October 9, 1839, when it carried down with it all 
which had resumed, except those in New York 
and a few in New England; February 4, 1841, 
when it was entirely ruined. Its stockholders lost 
all their capital. 

Biddle had resigned March 29, 1839, but he 
had been so identified with the Bank that its ruin 
was attributed to him. He fell into disgrace. He 
i 51 Niles, 113. 


was arraigned for conspiracy to plunder the stock- 
holders, but escaped on a technicality. He died, 
insolvent and broken-hearted, February 27, 1844, 
aged fifty-eight. 1 

Webster declared, in 1842, that a bank of the 
United States founded on a private subscription 
was an " obsolete idea ; " 2 but perhaps the unkind- 
est cut of all was that the Whig Almanac for 1843 
could refer to " Nick Biddle " as a rascal, and to 
" his Bank " as one which was " corruptly man- 

1 Ingersoll, 285 ; a very touching description of Biddle's last 

2 2 Webster's Works, 135. 



Quarrel with France. The neglect of France 
to fulfil the stipulations of the treaty of July 4, 
1831, offered the occasion for the most important 
diplomatic negotiation in which Jackson was en- 
gaged. In his message of 1834, he gave a full 
account of the treaty and of the neglect of the 
French Chambers, at two sessions, to appropriate 
money to meet engagements which had been made, 
on behalf of the French nation, by the constitu- 
tional authorities of France. The King had shown 
strong personal interest in the matter, 1 and had 
exerted himself to secure a satisfactory settlement 
and to prevent any bad feeling from arising be- 
tween the two nations. In the mean time the 
United States had reduced the duties on wine, 
according to the engagement in the treaty, by 
an act of July 13, 1832, and France was getting 
the benefit of the treaty without performing her 
share of it. It seemed to Jackson that this state 
s>f things called for spirited action. Moreover, 

1 Livingston's dispatch, 47 Niles, 417. Rives came home in 
\83I. Livingston went out in 1833. 


Livingston wrote a very important dispatch from 
Paris, November 22, 1834, 1 in which he said that 
there was a disposition in France to wait and see 
what the message would be ; also that the moderate 
tone of the United States up to this time had had 
a bad effect. " From all this you may imagine the 
anxiety I shall feel for the arrival of the Presi- 
dent's message. On its tone will depend, very 
much, not only the payment of our claims, but our 
national reputation for energy." The message of 
1834, which must have been prepared before this 
dispatch was received, did not sin by moderation 
and lack of energy. 2 The Due de Broglie, the 
French minister, afterwards declared that the ap- 
propriation would have been passed in December, 
1834, if copies of this message had not just then 
been received. Jackson was under erroneous in- 
formation as to the time of meeting of the French 
Chambers. The Due de Broglie had also, in the 
March previous, when the bill drawn by the Amer- 
ican Treasury went to protest, found fault with 
the American government for selling the bill to 
a bank, instead of receiving the money through 
a diplomatic agent. 3 He argued that the United 

1 47 Mies, 417. 

2 Curtis (Buchanan, i. 235) gives, without mentioning authority, 
a story that Judge Catron was sent to Jackson, by friends, at this 
time, to ask him to make his message, so far as it referred to 
the difficulty with France, mild, and that Jackson took from his 
drawer a letter from Louis Philippe, urging that the message 
should contain a threat of war, lest the payment be defeated in 
France. 8 47 Niles, 327. 


States ought not to have regarded the treaty as 
definitive until all the organs of the French govern- 
ment had assented to it. In his message, before 
mentioned, Jackson suggested that, if Congress 
inferred from the inaction of France that she did 
not intend to fulfil the treaty, it might proceed to 
measures of coercion, amongst which he mentioned 
reprisals, as suitable and "peaceable." He pra 
posed that a law should be passed authorizing re- 
prisals, if France should neglect the fulfilment of 
the treaty beyond a certain time. He added that 
this suggestion ought not to be regarded by France 
as a " menace." Chevalier thought that Jackson, 
having had his bout with the nullifiers, found his 
blood heated and his appetite for war reawakened ; 
that he satisfied this appetite first in the Bank war, 
and then in the difficulty with France. 1 

The message caused great excitement in France. 
The French journals all regarded it as a menace. 
The feeling was aroused that France could not 
then pay without dishonor. 2 Additional embar- 
rassment arose from the fact that the King's active 
interest was revealed by the documents published 
in America. The bad temper of the French was 
still further increased when they read Eives's let- 
ters, in which he seemed to boast of having out- 
witted the French minister, and Livingston's letter, 
in which he suggested that France never would pay 
unless the message brought her behavior before 

1 Chevalier, 177. See his estimate of Jackson's character. 

2 French newspapers quoted, 47 Niles, 327. 


Congress in a spirited way. The Committee on 
Foreign Relations of the Senate made a report, 1 
in which they expressed full agreement with the 
President on all the essential points ; but they re- 
garded the proposition to employ reprisals as pre- 
mature, and likely to embarrass the negotiations. 
In the House, two reports were made, 2 but they 
were not important. The Senate voted unani- 
mously, January 14, 1835, that it was not expe- 
dient to adopt any legislative measures in regard 
to the relations with France. In the House, J. Q. 
Adams took the lead in sustaining Jackson's po- 
sition, and was largely influential in securing the 
adoption by the House, unanimously, March 2, 
1835, of a resolution that the execution of the 
treaty should be insisted on. The French min- 
ister to the United States was recalled. His final 
note of January 14, 1835, was not received by 
Jackson, but was referred back to the French gov- 
ernment ; they approved of it. 

In December, 1834, the French Chambers re- 
jected a bill appropriating money to pay the indem- 
nities. A cabinet crisis followed, not on account 
of this vote, but also not entirely, as it appears, 
without reference to it. The Due de Broglie, how- 
ever, returned to office with the understanding that 
provision was to be made for fulfilling the treaty. 
April 25, 1835, the French Chambers passed the 
appropriation, but with a condition that no money 
should be paid until "satisfactory explanations" 
i 47 Niles, 344. 2 48 NileSj 5 and 6 . 


of the President's message of 1834 should be re- 
ceived. The original condition in the law was, 
" until it shall have been ascertained that the gov- 
ernment of the United States has adopted no mea- 
sures injurious to French interests ; " * but it was 
afterwards changed to the other form 2 by amend- 
ment. Livingston wrote a note, April 25, 1835, 
declaring that the message was a domestic docu- 
ment, for which no responsibility to any foreign 
power would be admitted ; that the message of 
1834 itself contained a sufficient disclaimer; and 
that the condition which had been incorporated in 
the act of the French Chambers would prevent it 
from being a satisfactory settlement. 3 He then 
came home. In Congress, whose session ended 
March 4th, an amendment to the usual appropria- 
tion bill for fortifications was proposed, by which 
$3,000,000 were appropriated for extraordinary ex- 
penditures for defence, in case such should become 
necessary before the next session. The whole 
bill was lost, borne down, as it appears, by this 
amendment. As the relations with France were 
still more critical when Congress next met, and 
nothing had been done for defence, on account 
of the failure of .that bill, a great deal of crimina- 
tion and recrimination took place in an effort to 
fix the blame and responsibility. No result was 
reached. 4 

In the message of 1835, Jackson reviewed the 

1 47 Niles, 436. 2 48 Niles, 220. 

48 Niles, 318. * 49 Niles, 446. 


whole affair, insisted that he had never used men- 
ace, and alluded to Livingston's final note to the 
French minister as having clearly so stated. He 
said that he would never apologize. A long dis- 
patch of the Due de Broglie to the French charge 
here, in June, 1835, set forth the French case. It 
was read to Forsyth, but he declined to receive a 
copy. 1 Jackson directed Barton, charge d'affaires 
at Paris, to make a specific inquiry what France 
intended to do. The Due de Broglie replied that 
France would pay whenever the United States 
would say that it regretted the misunderstanding, 
that the misunderstanding arose from mistake, that 
the good faith of France had not been questioned, 
and that no menace was ever intended. This ques- 
tion and answer were exchanged in October, 1835. 2 
Barton came home in January, 1836, and Pageot, 
the French charge, was recalled at the same time, 
so that diplomatic relations were entirely broken 

January 18, 1836, Jackson sent in a special 
message on the relations with France, 3 sending 
copies of Barton's correspondence. Livingston 
toned down 4 this message somewhat from the first 
intention ; nevertheless Jackson in it again recom- 
mended coercive measures. He proposed to ex- 
clude French ships and products from the ports of 
the United States ; that is to say, his reserve of 
force by which to sustain his spirited diplomacy 

1 49 Niles, 353. 2 49 Niles, 347. 

8 49 Niles, 345. * Hunt's Livingston, 428. 


was the old, imbecile, and worn-out device of a com- 
mercial war. He said that France was strengthen- 
ing her navy ; if against us, an apology from us 
was out of the question. 

Thus this question had been pushed into the 
worst kind of a diplomatic dead-lock, out of which 
neither party could advance without fighting, and 
neither could recede without (supposed) dishonor. 
That is the evil of spirited diplomacy, for good 
diplomacy would avoid such a dead-lock as one of 
the worst blunders possible in the profession. The 
English government now intervened, and offered 
its good offices as mediator. The French govern- 
ment declared to the English that the President's 
message of 1835 had removed the bad impressions 
of that of 1834. This declaration was made known 
to Forsyth by the English minister at Washington, 
and was transmitted to Congress, with a message 
by the President, February 22, 1836. 1 It was 
very good-natured of France to regard the message 
of 1835 as compliance with the demands which 
had been made to Barton in October. She simply 
covered her retreat, for she had been in the wrong 
on the merits of the question from the beginning, 
and she justly bore half the blame of the diplo- 
matic dead-lock. March 19, 1836, the King of 
France ordered four instalments of the indemnity 
to be paid at once, in order to settle the matter 
down to date, according to the terms of the 

i 49 Niles, 442. 


The Post- Office. Barry, the Postmaster-Gen- 
eral, was the only member of the cabinet retained 
in 1831. In his hands the administration of the 
Post-Office Department, both in its business and 
its finances, steadily declined. The complaints in 
1834-35 of the irregularity and delay of the mails 
were very numerous and bitter. The department 
was also running into arrears financially. Both 
Houses of Congress, at the session of 1834-35, 
investigated the department. Barry's personal 
honesty does not seem to have been questioned, 
but his chief clerk, Rev. Obadiah B. Brown, 1 be- 
came for the time a very distinguished man, on 
account of relations with mail contractors, which, 
if innocent, were very improper. The contractors 
had made use of familiar devices, " straw bids," 
" unbalanced bids," " expedited service," etc., if 
not of corrupt influences on subordinates in the 
department, by which chicanery shrewd men take 
advantage of inefficient public officers. 2 Barry re- 
fused to answer some of the questions put to him, 
and in place thereof, after the fashion of the time, 
published an " Appeal to the American People." 3 
Brown resigned in an official document, imitated 
apparently from Van Buren's resignation of 1831. 4 
He too published an " Appeal," etc. Jackspn 
selected Kendall for Barry's successor,. May 1, 
1835. Kendall's administrative ability was great, 
and he speedily reorganized the department, and 

i See page 443. 2 47 Niles, 381, 393. 

8 46 Niles, 338, * 47 Nile*,. 395. 


restored its efficiency. There was great doubt, 
however, when he was appointed, whether he would 
be confirmed. Barry was sent as minister to Spain, 
but died on his way thither. 

Slavery. The emancipation of slaves in the 
British West Indies in 1833 gave a great impulse in 
the United States to abolition sentiment and effort, 
which had not been active since the compromise of 
1820 was adopted. The new spirit was manifested 
in the organization of societies, distribution of 
pamphlets and newspapers, petitions to Congress 
to abolish slavery in the District of Columbia, and 
other forms of agitation. The first efforts of 
this kind were frowned down all over the North, 
but the general movement grew. The sentiments 
of democracy and of religion were both against 
slavery, and every step which was taken to arrest 
the agitation the gag law in Congress, by which 
petitions about slavery were practically shut out, 
and the mob violence which was employed against 
the agitators only strengthened it. Towards 
the end of Jackson's second administration the 
antislavery agitation was a real growing movement, 
and an element in the social and civil life of the 
nation. The story of these things has been often 
told in detail, and may be passed over here. The 
history of the United States has, in fact, been 
studied chiefly with regard to the slavery question. 
Jackson's administration was not called upon to 
act on the slavery issue save in one or two points. 

The abolition societies adopted the policy of 


sending documents, papers, and pictures against 
slavery to the southern States. If the intention 
was, as was charged, to incite the slaves to revolt, 
the device, as it -seems to us now, must have fallen 
far short of its object, for the chance that anything 
could get from the post-office into the hands of a 
black man, without going through the hands of a 
white man, was poor indeed. These publications, 
however, caused a panic and a wild indignation in 
the South. The postmaster at Charleston, being 
lectured by the people there on his duty, turned to 
the Postmaster-General for orders. August 4, 
1835, Kendall gave an ambiguous reply, so far as 
orders were concerned. He, however, threw the 
postmaster on his own discretion, and then said 
for himself : " By no act or direction of mine, official 
or private, could I be induced to aid, knowingly, 
in giving circulation to papers of this description, 
directly or indirectly " (i. e., papers alleged by the 
postmaster to be " the most inflammatory and in- 
cendiary, and insurrectionary to the last degree " ). 
" We owe an obligation to the laws, but a higher 
one to the communities in which we live, and, if 
the former be perverted to destroy the latter, it is 
patriotism to disregard them. Entertaining these 
views, I cannot sanction, and will not condemn, 
the step you have taken" in refusing to deliver 
certain mail-matter. August 22d Kendall wrote 
a long letter to Gouverneur, postmaster at New 
York, elaborating and defending his position. 1 
i 49 Mies, 8. 


Politics were already combined with the slavery 
question in this incident. Kendall's confirmation 
by the Senate was very doubtful, and Van Buren's 
southern support was ready to abandon him at 
a moment's notice, if slavery came into account. 
Kendall won enough southern votes to carry his 

Texas and Mexico. Monroe, as Secretary of 
State, in 1816, instructed the Minister to Spain 
that President Madison would consent \o the Sa- 
bine from its mouth to its source as the Voundary 
between the United States and the Spanish pro- 
vinces. 1 When J. Q. Adams, in 1819, was nego- 
tiating with the Spanish minister the treaty by 
which the western boundary of the United States 
was defined, he could get no encouragement from 
f Monroe or any of his ministers to try to push the 
boundary westward. 2 Monroe appeared to think 
that the United States would be weakened by 
including territory west of the Sabine. 3 It was 
not long, however, before the southern slave-hold- 
ing interest began to see the error of this view of 
the matter. After the Missouri Compromise was 
adopted, it appeared that wild land for the ^forma- 
tion of new free States was owned north of that 
line from the Mississippi to the Pacific, while 
south of that line similar land, available for new 
slave States, extended only to the Sabine and the 
100-degree meridian. The Richmond " Enquirer," 
March 7, 1820, said: The southern and western 
1 12 Adams, 64. 2 See page 84. 8 11 Adams, 348. 


representatives " owe it to themselves to keep their 
eyes firmly fixed on Texas. If we are cooped 
up on the north, we must have elbow room to 
the west." l Only a few persons, however, as 
yet perceived this view of the matter. On June 
23, 1819, one James Long proclaimed the inde- 
pendence of Texas. 2 In 1821 Austin colonized 
three hundred families in Texas, by permission 
of Mexico. In 1826 some American immigrants 
at Nacogdoches declared Texas independent. In 4 
1824 the Emperor of Russia tried to establish ex- 
clusive control over the Northern Pacific, and the 
attention of the most far-seeing statesmen was 
drawn to the interests of the United States in the 
Northwest and on the Pacific. It seems necessary 
to bear in mind, all through the history of the . 
annexation of Texas, the connection of that ques- 
tion with the acquisition of California, including 
the port of San Francisco, which was then the 
chief reason for wanting California. Adams, when 
President, in 1827, sent to Poinsett, minister of 
the United States in Mexico, orders to try to buy 
Texas for a million dollars. Poinsett did not 
make the attempt. He gave as his reason the 
danger of irritating Mexico by a proposition which 
was sure to be rejected. 3 

In 1824 Mexico took the first steps towards the 
abolition of slavery. By a decree of September 

1 Quoted 1 Tyler's Tylers, 325. 2 17 Niles, 31 ; Jay. 
8 The attempt to buy Texas seems to have been Clay's act. 
Cf. 7 Adams, 239, 240 ; 9 Adams, 379 ; especially 11 Adams, 348. 


15, 1829, slavery was definitively abolished. In 
the mean time, Americans had emigrated to Texas, 
chiefly from the southern States, and had taken 
slaves thither. They resisted the abolition decree, 
and the Mexican government saw itself forced to 
except the State of Texas from the decree. It, 
however, united Texas with Coahuila, as a means 
of holding the foreign and insubordinate settlers 
in check. The abolition of slavery by Mexico 
affected the southern States doubly : first, it les- 
sened the area open to slavery ; second, it put a 
free State on the flank and rear of the slave terri 
tory. The interest of the southwestern States in 
the independence of Texas, or its annexation, was 
at once aroused. A fanciful doctrine, in the taste 
of the southwestern statesmen, was immediately 
invented to give a basis for stump-speaking in 
defence of a real act of violence. It was declared 
that the United States must KE-annex what had 
once been maliciously given away by a northern 
statesman. The gravity and care with which 
re-annexation was talked about had its parallel 
only in the theatrical legislation of nullification. 
In 1780 Spain claimed that the eastern boundary 
of Louisiana was such as to include nearly all the 
present State of Alabama, and the Hiawasee, Ten- 
nessee, Clinch, and Cumberland rivers through 
what is now Tennessee and Kentucky. 1 Inside of 
this claim she would take what she could get. 
The boundaries to the westward were still more 

1 Ramsey, 523. 


vague. Therefore, any one who chose to dabble 
in the authorities could prove anything he liked, 
and think himself no contemptible scholar into the 
bargain. "Texas," as a State of the Mexican 
confederation, embraced only the southeastern cor- 
ner" of the territory now included in the State of 
that name. 1 

The anxiety about Texas was increasing just 
when Jackson came into power. The South ex- 
pected him to secure it. " If the discussion of the 
acquisition of Texas brings on the agitation of the 
slave question, as we are sure that it will, a rupture 
with the northern States will become almost in- t 
evitable." 2 Erving, who had been minister to 
Spain in 1819, claimed to show to Jackson that he 
had, at that time, laid the basis for a negotiation 
at Madrid, which would have set the boundary at 
the Colorado, or even at the Rio Grande, but that 
the negotiation was transferred to Washington, 
where American rights were surrendered. 3 In the , 
summer of 1829 Van Buren sent instructions to 
Poinsett to try to buy Texas, and five million* 
dollars were offered for it. In 1830 Mexico, 
which had at first welcomed the immigrants, for- 
bade Americans to settle in Texas. Of course this 
law had no effect. 

1 Carey & Lea's Atlas, 1822. Cf. Carey's map of 1814, on 
which Texas seems to be delineated as extending from the Nueces 
to the Sabine. 

2 Columbia, S. C., Telescope, Nov. 6, 1829, in 37 Niles, 213. 
8 Letters in the Ford MSS. See p. 459. 


We are indebted to a Dr. Mayo, who was a 
hanger-on at Washington during Jackson's time, 
for a little book in which most of the Texas 
intrigue is laid bare. Mayo was in the way of 
picking up certain information, and more came to 
him by accident. He gives also many documents. 
He was intimate with ex-Governor Samuel Hous- 
ton, of Tennessee, an old companion in arms of 
Jackson, who came to Washington in 1829 to 
get Jackson's connivance at an enterprise which 
Houston had in mind for revolutionizing Texas. 
That Jackson did connive at this enterprise, just 
as he supposed Monroe connived at his own pro- 
ceedings in Florida, cannot be established by proof, 
but it is sustained by very strong inference. 1 

April 5, 1832, two treaties with Mexico were 
published, one of commerce and one of bound- 
aries, confirming the boundary of the Florida 

In 1833 a revolution broke out in Mexiao, which 
threw the whole country into anarchy, Texas with 
the rest. Santa Anna gradually established his 
authority. In the autumn of 1835 he tried to 
extend it over Texas, but he met with armed resist- 
ance, and was defeated. In July, 1835, Jackson 
authorized an offer of an additional half million 
dollars if Mexico would allow the boundary, after 

1 See 11 Adams, 41, 347, 357, 363 ; and his Fifteen Day Speech, 
of June, 1838. Wise (Decades, 148), affirms it very positively. 
He is better authority on this point than on some others about 
which he is very positive, e. g. } the Adams-Clay bargain. 


the cession of Texas, to follow the Kio Grande up 
to the thirty-seventh degree, and then run on that 
parallel to the Pacific. 1 All propositions to pur- 
chase failed. After the Texans proved able to 
beat the Mexicans in battle, no further propositions 
of that kind were made. 

March 2, 1836, a Declaration of Independence, 
on behalf of Texas, was adopted. March 6th the 
fort of the Alamo was taken by the Mexicans, and 
its defenders massacred. On the 27th Colonels 
Fannin and Ward, with other Texan (or Ameri- 
can) prisoners, were massacred. On the 17th of 
March the Constitution of Texas was adopted. 
It contained the strongest provisions in favor of 
slavery. The massacres aroused great indignation 
in the Southwest, and hundreds of adventurers 
hastened to Texas, where Houston was now chief 
in command, to help him win independence. 2 The 
decisive battle was fought at San Jacinto, April 
21st, when Santa Anna was routed and captured. 
He promised everything in captivity, but cancelled 
his promises after he was released. 3 

1 11 Adams, 362. 2 Jay, 28. 

3 There is in the Ford MSS. a copy of a letter from Lewis to 
Houston, in which the former proposes the plan which was fol- 
lowed : " To turn Santa Anna loose upon those gentry who have 
possessed themselves of his place. ... If he were to return to 
Mexico, I have no doubt he would give them enough to do at 
home, instead of collecting and marching their forces against 
you." He added that, if Santa Anna did not keep faith, foreign 
nations would acknowledge Texas. He states that the letter was 
written at the suggestion of the President, that it had been read 
to him, and that he desired that it should be sent. 


" The mission of Col. Butler having failed, I then 
determined to use my influence, after the battle of San 
Jacinto, to have the independence of Texas acknow- 
ledged, and to receive her into the Union. But that 
arch enemy, J. Q. Adams, rallied all his forces to pre- 
vent its annexation to the U. States We must regain 
Texas ; peacebly if we can ; forcibly if we must ! . . . 
I repeat that the safety, as well as the perpetuation of 
our glorious Union depends upon the retrocession of the 
whole of that country, as far as the ancient limits of 
Louisiana, to the U. States." 1 

In June, 1836, Judge Catron wrote to Webster, 
from Tennessee, that the spirit was abroad through 
the whole Mississippi Valley to march to Texas. 2 
Perhaps the disposition to march was not so strong 
elsewhere, but immense speculations in land had 
already been organized, and great speculations in 
Texan 3 securities soon after began, which enlisted 
the pecuniary interests of great numbers of people 
in the independence of Texas. , 

A correspondence now began between the repre- 
sentatives of the governments of the United States 
and Mexico, which no American ought to read with- 
out shame. It would be hard to find an equally 
gross instance of bullying on the part of a large 
State towards a small one. Jackson had ordered 

1 Ford MSS. ; Jackson to Lewis, September 18, 1843. 

2 1 Webster's Correspondence, 523. 

8 The first issue of Texan bonds was authorized in November, 
1836. The first Treasury notes were issued November 1, 1837. 
Gouge's Texas, 57, 71. 


that General Gaines should enter the territory of 
Texas, and march to Nacogdoches, if he thought 
that there was any danger of hostilities on the part 
of the Indians, and if there was suspicion that the 
Mexican general was stirring up the Indians to war 
on the United States. Here we have another re- 
miniscence of Florida revived. Gaines understood 
his orders, and entered the Mexican territory. 
Understanding also, no doubt, that the Jacksonian 
proceedings of 1818 had now been legitimized as 
the correct American line of procedure for a mili- 
tary officer, he called on the governors of the 
neighboring States for militia. Although com- 
panies were forming and marching to Texas under 
full organization, this " call " was overruled by the 
War Department. The energetic remonstrances 
of the Mexican minister finally led to an order to 
Gaines to retire from Texan territory, not, however, 
until after the Mexican minister had broken off 
diplomatic relations. 

In July, 1836, both Houses voted, the Senate 
unanimously, that the independence of Texas ought 
to be acknowledged as soon as Texas had proved 
that she could maintain it. Texas was already 
represented by agents applying for annexation. 
Jackson recommended longer delay in a message 
of December 21, 1836. The fact was that the 
geographical definition of " Texas " was not yet 
satisfactorily established, and it was not desirable 
to have annexation settled too soon. An act was 
passed by the Legislature of Texas, December 19, 


1836, by which the Kio Grande was declared to be 
the western boundary of Texas. In his message 
of December 22d, Jackson submitted the report 
of his agent that the boundaries of Texas, before 
the last revolution, were the Nueces, the Red, and 
the Sabine rivers, but that she now claimed as her 
boundary the Rio del Norte to its source, and from 
that point eastward and southward the existing 
boundary of the United States. 1 That is as if 
Maine should secede and claim that her boundaries 
were the Alleghanies and the Potomac. Jackson's 
message distinctly pointed out that in taking Texas 
then, or later, the United States would take her 
with her new boundary claims. That is as if Maine 
should join the Dominion of Canada, and England 
should set up a claim to the New England and 
Middle States based on the " declaration " of Maine 
above supposed. The policy was to keep the Texas 
question open until California could be obtained. 
The Mexican war ultimately became necessary for 
that purpose, and for no other ; for Texas, even to 
the Rio Grande, could have been obtained without 
it. 2 Another reason for delay was that opposition 
to the annexation of Texas had been aroused in 
the North, and there was not yet strength enough 
to carry it. May 25, 1836, Adams 3 made a speech 
against a war with Mexico to conquer Texas, which 
had great influence in the North. 

1 Document L. 

2 3 Von Hoist, 67, 81, 103, 108, 112 ; Jay, 130. 
8 50 Niles, 276. 


March 1, 1837, the Senate recognized the inde- 
pendence of Texas, 23 to 19. The House did not 
concur in full form, but did in effect. 

In 1836 the government of the United States 
opened a new battery against that of Mexico in the 
shape of a series of claims and charges. The 
diplomatic agent of the former power, Powhatan 
Ellis, performed his duties in such a rude and per- 
emptory manner that one is forced to suspect that 
he acted by orders, especially as his rank was only 
that of charge d'affaires. The charges were at 
first 15 in number, then 46, then 57. They were 
frivolous and forced, and bear the character of 
attempts to make a quarrel. 1 Ellis abruptly came 
home. In August, 1837, the agent of Texas, 
Memucan Hunt, made a formal proposal for an- 
nexation. Van Buren declined it. Mexico next 
proposed a new negotiation, with arbitration in 
regard to the claims and charges made against her 
by the United States. The opposition to annexa- 
tion in the North had grown so strong that delay 
was necessary, and negotiations were opened which 
resulted in the convention of August 17, 1840. 
Mexico could not fulfil the engagements she en- 
tered into in that treaty, or in a subsequent one of 
1843, and so the question was reopened, and finally 
was mano3uvred into a war. It appears that Van 
Buren had the feeling which any President will 
be sure to have, adverse to any war during his 
administration. The Mexican war was forced on 
1 Jay, 36 et seq. 


by a cabinet intrigue, and Tyler forced it on 

The Texas intrigue and the Mexican war were 
full of Jacksonian acts and principles. There are 
constant outcroppings of the old Seminole war pro- 
ceedings and doctrines. The army and navy were 
corrupted by swagger and insubordination, and by 
the anxiety of the officers to win popularity by the 
methods of which Jackson had set the example. 1 
The filibustering spirit, one law for ourselves and 
another for every one else, gained a popularity for 
which Jackson was much to blame. During the 
Texas intrigue, Jackson engaged in private and 
personal correspondence on public questions with 
diplomatic agents, who were not always accredited. 2 

Ztriscoe vs. The Bank of the Commonwealth of 
Kentucky. In 1834 the case of Briscoe vs. The 
Bank of the Commonwealth of Kentucky was ar- 
gued before the Supreme Court. 3 Briscoe and 
others gave a note, in 1830, which they did not 
pay at maturity. In the State Circuit Court, 
Briscoe pleaded " no consideration," on the ground 
that the note was given for a loan of notes of the 
Bank of the Commonwealth, which were " bills of 
credit " within the prohibition of the Constitution, 
and therefore of no value. The State court found 

1 In 1824 Commodore Porter was guilty of an outrage at Fo- 
xardo, Porto Rico. When court-martialled, he made an elaborate 
comparison of his proceedings with those of Jackson in Florida, 
by way of defence. 28 Niles, 370. He was cashiered. 

2 11 Adams, 357. 8 8 Peters, 118. 


for the bank. The State Court of Appeals affirmed 
that decision. The case was carried to the Supreme 
Court of the United States on a writ of error. The 
court consisted, in 1834, of Chief Justice Marshall, 
of Virginia, appointed by Adams in 1801 ; and 
Associate Justices Johnson, of South Carolina, ap- 
pointed by Jefferson in 1804; Duvall, of Maryland, 
appointed by Madison in 1811 ; Story, of Massa- 
chusetts, appointed in the same year by the same ; 
Thompson, of New York, appointed by Monroe in 
1823 ; McLean, of Ohio, appointed by Jackson 
in 1829 ; and Baldwin, of Pennsylvania, appointed 
by Jackson in 1830. Johnson was absent all the 
term. Duvall was absent part of the term. Of 
the five who heard the argument in Briscoe's case, 
a majority thought that the notes of the Bank of 
the Commonwealth were bills of credit under the 
decision in Craig vs. Missouri, 1 but there were not 
four, a majority of the whole, who concurred in 
this opinion. The rule of the court was, not to 
pronounce a State law invalid for unconstitution- 
ally unless a majority of the whole court should 
concur. Hence no decision was rendered. 

The Circuit Court of Mercer County, Kentucky, 
decided in 1834, under the decision in Craig vs. 
Missouri, that the notes of the Bank of the Com- 
monwealth were bills of credit. 2 

Judge Johnson died in 1834. Duvall resigned 
in January, 1835. Wayne took his seat January 
14, 1835. Hence there was one vacancy in 1835, 
i See page 175. 2 46 NUes, 210. 


and Briscoe's case went over. Marshall died July 
6, 1835. In 1836 there were only five judges on 
the bench of the court. Taney was confirmed 
March 15, 1836. P. P. Barbour, of Virginia, was 
confirmed on the same day. This made the court 
complete again. Three changes had taken place 
since 1834, and five of the seven judges were now 
Jackson's appointees. 

Briscoe vs. The Bank was decided in January, i 
1837. The decision was by McLean. It was held 
that a bill of credit u is a paper issued by the sov- j 
ereign power, containing a pledge of its faith and 
designed to circulate as money.'' Notes, to be bills 
of credit, must be issued by the State and bind 
the faith of the State. Commissioners of issue 
must not impart any credit by signature, nor be 
responsible. Hence it was held that the notes 
of the Bank of the Commonwealth were not bills of 
credit. Story rendered a very strong and unusu- 
ally eager dissenting opinion. In it he gave a 
summary history and analysis of " bills of credit " 
as they existed before the Revolution, and as they 
were understood by the Constitution-makers. He 
explicitly referred to the former hearing of the 
case, and said that Marshall had been in the ma- 
jority against the constitutionality of the issues. 

The decision in Briscoe's case marks the begin- 
ning of a new era in the history of the constitu- 
tional law of the United States. Up to that time 
the court had not failed to pursue the organic de- 
velopment of the Constitution, and it had, on every 


occasion on which it was put to the test, proved 
the bulwark of constitutional liberty, by the steadi- 
ness and solidity of judgment with which it had 
established the interpretation of the Constitution, 
and checked every partial and interested effort to 
wrest the instrument from its true character. ) Our 
children are familiarized, in their school-books, 
with the names of statesmen and generals, and 
popular tradition carries forward^the fame of men 
who have been conspicuous in public life ; but no 
one who really knows how the national life of the 
United States has developed will dispute the asser- 
tion, that no man can be named to whom the nation 
is more indebted for solid and far-reaching services 
than it is to John Marshall. The proceedings of 
the Supreme Court are almost always overlooked 
in ordinary narrations of history, but he who looks 
for real construction or growth in the institutions 
of the country should look to those proceedings 
first of all. Especially in the midst of a surging 
democracy, exposed to the chicane of political 
mountebanks and the devices of interestedneliques, 
the firmness and correctness with which the court 
had held its course on .behalf of constitutional lib- 
erty and order has been of inestimable value to 
the nation. The series of great constitutional de- 
cisions, to which reference has been made in the 
preceding pages, have now entered into the com- 
monplaces of our law. They have been tested 
through three quarters of a century. To see in 
the retrospect that they were wise, and that the 


contrary decisions would have produced mischief, 
is one thing ; to see at the time, in the heat of con- 
troversy and under the clamor of interests, what 
was the sound and correct interpretation, and to 
pronounce it in spite of abuse, was another thing. 

In Briscoe's case the court broke the line of its 
decisions, and made the prohibition of bills of 
credit nugatory. 1 If the degree of responsibility 
and independent authority which the directors of 
the Bank of the Commonwealth of Kentucky pos- 
sessed, and the amount of credit they gave to the 
notes, aside from the credit of the State, was suf- 
ficient to put those notes outside the prohibition of 
the Constitution, then no State could find any 
difficulty in making a device for escaping the 
constitutional prohibition. Wild-cat banking was 
granted standing ground under the Constitution, 
and the boast that the Constitutional Convention 
had closed and barred the door against the paper 
money with which the colonies had been cursed 
was without foundation. The great " banks " set 
up by the southwestern States between 1835 and 
1837 were protected by this decision. They went 
on their course, and carried, those States down to 
bankruptcy and repudiation. The wild-cat bank- 
ing which devastated the Ohio States between 1837 
and 1860, and miseducated the people of those 

1 "A virtual and incidental enforcement of the depreciated 
notes of the State banks, by their crowding out a sound medium, 
though a great evil, was not foreseen." Madison to C. J. Inger- 
soll, February 22, 1831 ; 4 Elliott, 641. 


States until they thought irredeemable government 
issues an unhoped-for blessing, never could have 
existed if Story's opinion had been law. The legal- 
tender notes of 1862, and the decisions of the Su- 
preme Court on the constitutionality of the legal- 
tender act, must have borne an entirely different 
color, if Marshall's opinion had prevailed in Bris- 
coe's case. 

Jackson's appointments introduced the mode of 
action by the Executive, through the selection of 
the judges, on the interpretation of the Constitu- 
tion by the Supreme Court. Briscoe's case marked 
the victory of Kentucky relief finance and State 
rights politics over the judiciary. The effect of 
political appointments to the bench is easily trace- 
able, after two or three years, in the reports, which 
come to read like a collection of old stump speeches. 
The climax of the tendency which Jackson inau- 
gurated was reached when the court went to pieces 
on the Dred Scott case, trying to reach a decision 
which should be politically expedient, rather than 
one which should be legally sound. A later and 
similar instance is furnished by the legal-tender 
cases. As for the immediate effect of Jackson's 
appointments, it may be most decorously stated 
by quoting from Story's reasons, in 1845, for pro- 
posing to resign : " I have been long convinced 
that the doctrines and opinions of the old court 
were daily losing ground, and especially those on 
great constitutional questions. New men and new 
opinions have succeeded. The doctrines of the 


Constitution, so vital to the country, which, in for- 
mer times, received the support of the whole court, 
no longer maintain their ascendency. I am the 
last member now living of the old court, and I 
cannot consent to remain where I can no longer 
hope to see those doctrines recognized and en- 
forced." l 

Civil and Social Phenomena. During Jack- 
son's second term the growth of the nation in 
wealth and prosperity was very great. It is plain, 
from the history we have been pursuing, that, in 
spite of all the pettiness and provincialism which 
marked political controversies, the civil life of the 
nation was growing wider and richer. It was 
just because there was an immeasurable source of 
national life in the physical circumstances, and in 
the energy of the people, that the political follies 
and abuses could be endured. If the politicians 
and statesmen would only let the nation alone it 
would go on, not only prosperously, but smoothly ; 
that is why the non-interference dogma of the 
democrats, which the whigs denounced as non- 
government, was in fact the highest political wis- 
dom. On reflection it will not be found strange 
that the period 1829 to 1837 should have been 
marked by a great deal of violence and turbulence. 
It is not possible that a growing nation should 
spread over new territory, and feel the thrill of 
its own young energies contending successfully 
with nature in all her rude force, without social 

i 2 Story's Story, 527. 


commotions and a certain recklessness and uproar. 
The contagion of these forms of disorder produces 
other and less excusable forms. On account of 
the allowance to be made for violence and lawless- 
ness under the circumstances, and also on account 
of the disagreeableness of recalling, if it can be 
avoided, old follies, no recapitulation of the out- 
rages, mobs, riots, etc., of the period will here be 
attempted. Suffice it to say that they were worse 
and more numerous than either before or since. 
Brawls and duels between congressmen, and as- 
saults on congressmen by persons who considered 
themselves aggrieved by words spoken in debate, 
were very frequent at Washington. The cities 
possessed, as yet, no police. The proposition to 
introduce police was resented as an assault on 
liberty. Rowdies, native Americans, protestants, 
firemen, anti-abolitionists, trades-unionists, anti- 
bank men, etc., etc., in turn produced riots in the 
streets of the great eastern cities. From the 
South came hideous stories of burning negroes, 
hanging abolitionists, and less heinous violence 
against the mails. From Charlestown, Massachu- 
setts, came the story of the cruel burning of a 
convent. Niles, in August, 1835, gathered three 
pages of reports of recent outrages against law and 
order. 1 A month later he has another catalogue, 
and he exclaims in astonishment that the world 
seems upside down. 2 The fashion of the time 
seemed to be to pass at once from the feeling to 
1 48 Niles, 439. 2 49 Nilea> 49, 


the act. That Jackson's character and example 
had done something to set this fashion is hardly 
to be denied. Harriet Martineau and Richard 
Cobden, both friendly critics, were shocked and 
disappointed at the social condition. Adams, in 
1834, wrote thus : " The prosperity of the coun- 
try, independent of all agency of the government, 
is so great that the people have nothing to disturb 
them but their own waywardness and corruption. 
They quarrel upon dissensions of a doit, and split 
up in gangs of partisans of A, B, and C, without 
knowing why they prefer one to another. Cau- 
cuses, county, State, and national conventions, 
public dinners and dinner-table speeches, two or 
three hours long, constitute the operative power 
of electioneering ; and the parties are of working 
men, temperance reformers, anti-masons, Union 
and State rights men, nullifiers, and, above all, 
Jackson men, Van Buren men, Clay men, Calhoun 
men, Webster men, and McLean men, whigs and 
tories, republicans and democrats, without one 
ounce of honest principle to choose between 
them." 1 In his long catalogue he yet omitted 
abolitionists and native Americans, the latter of 
whom began to be heard of as soon as foreign im- 
migration became great. Great parties did not 
organize on the important political questions. 
Men were led off on some petty side issue, or they 
attached themselves to a great man, with whom 
they hoped to come to power. The zeal of these 
1 9 Adams, 187. 


little cliques was astonishing. One feels that there 
must have been a desire to say to them : No doubt 
the thing you have taken up as your hobby is fairly 
important, but why get so excited about it, and why 
not pursue your reformatory and philanthropic 
work outside of politics ? Why not go about your 
proposed improvement soberly and in due measure ? 
The truth was that nearly all the cliques wanted 
to reach their object by the short cut of legislation, 
that is, to force other people to do what they were 
convinced it was a wise thing to do, and a great 
many of them also wanted to make political capi- 
tal out of their " causes." There was something 
provincial about the gossip and news-mongering 
over small things, and about the dinners and ova- 
tions to fourth-rate men. One wonders if the 
people had not enough interesting things to occupy 
them. They could not have been very busy or 
hard-worked, if they had time to spend on all 
these things. There was something bombastic, too, 
about the way in which an orator took up a trifle. 
Everything in the surroundings forced him to be 
inflated and meretricious, in order to swell up to 
the dimensions of the occasion the trifle with which 
he was forced to deal. At the same time serious 
things, like nullification, were treated by the same 
inflated method, which made them ridiculous. On 
every occasion of general interest the people ran 
together for a public meeting. Their method of 
doing their thinking on any topic seemed to be to 
hear some speeches about it. No doubt this was 


one reason why there was so . much heat mixed up 
with all opinons. The prevailing disposition to 
boast, and the over-sensitiveness to foreign criti- 
cism which was manifested, were additional symp- 
toms of immaturity. 

January 30, 1835, 1 Jackson attended the fune- 
ral, at the Capitol, of Warren R. Davis, of South 
Carolina. As he came out through the rotunda, 
a man named Richard Lawrence snapped two pis- 
tols in succession at him. Neither was discharged. 
Lawrence gave half a dozen inconsistent reasons 
for the act. He was plainly insane. Jackson im- 
mediately gave the attack a political significance. 
Some days after it occurred, Harriet Martineau 
called upon him, and referred to the " insane at- 
tempt." " He protested, in the presence of many 
strangers, that there was no insanity in the case. 
I was silent, of course. He protested that there 
was a plot, and that the man was a tool." 2 He 
went so far as to name senator Poindexter, of 
Mississippi, as the instigator. He was at feud 
with Poindexter, although the latter had been with 
him at New Orleans, and had defended him in 
Congress in the Seminole war affair. Harriet 
Martineau says that it was expected at Washing- 
ton that they would have a duel as soon as Jack- 
son's term was out. This was probably based on 
a reputed speech of Poindexter, to which the 

1 47 Niles, 340 ; 1 Tyler's Tylers, 508. 

2 1 Martineau, Western Travel, 162. She was in the Capitol 
when the attack occurred. 


" Globe " gave currency. 1 That paper, nearly a 
month after the attempted assassination, treated 
the charge against Poindexter as not at all incredi- 
ble. Poindexter obtained an investigation by the 
Senate, when the charge was, of course, easily 
proved to rest upon the most frivolous and un- 
trustworthy assertions, no one of which would bear 
the slightest examination, and some of which were 
distinctly false. The incident, however, illustrated 
one trait of Jackson's character, which has been 
noted several times before. The most extravagant 
and baseless suspicion of a personal enemy, in con- 
nection with an injury to himself, struck his mind 
with such a degree of self-evident truth that exter- 
nal evidence to the contrary had no influence on 
him. In the present case, this fault laid him open 
to a charge of encouraging persons who had com- 
mitted perjury, and had suborned 2 others to do so. 
Lawrence, on his trial, continually interrupted the 
proceedings. He was acquitted, and remanded to 
custody as an insane person. 

The Equal Rights Party or Loco-focos. A 
faction arose in New York city in 1834-35, which 
called itself the " equal rights party," or the 
" Jeffersonian anti-monopolists." The organiza- 
tion of the Tamrnany Hall democrats, under Van 
Buren and the regency, had become rigid and 
tyrannical. The equal rights faction revolted, and 
declared that Tammany was aristocratic. They 
represented a new upheaval of democracy. They 
1 48 NUes, 33. 2 9 Adams, 229. 


took literally the dogmas which had been taught 
them, just as the original Jackson men had done 
ten years before, only that now, to them, the Jack- 
son party seated in power seemed to have drifted 
away from the pure principles of democracy, just 
as Monroe had once appeared to the Jackson men 
to have done. The equal rights men wanted " to 
return to the Jeffersonian fountain " again, and 
make some new deductions. They revived and 
extended the old doctrines which Duane, of the 
" Aurora," taught at the beginning of the century 
in his " Politics for Farmers," and similar pam- 
phlets. In general the doctrines and propositions 
might be described as an attempt to apply the pro- 
cedure of a township democracy to a great state. 
The equal rights men held meetings at first se- 
cretly, at four different places, and not more than 
two successive times at the same place. 1 They 
were, in a party point of view, conspirators, rebels, 
" disorganizes," in short ; and they were plotting 
the highest crime known to the political code in 
which they had been educated, and which they 
accepted. Their platform was : No distinction be- 
tween men save merit ; gold and silver the only 
legitimate and proper circulating medium ; no 
perpetuities or monopolies ; strict construction of 
the Constitution ; no bank charters by States (be- 
cause banks of issue favor gambling, and are " cal- 
culated to build up and strengthen in our country 
the odious distribution of wealth and power against 

1 Byrdsall, 16. 


merits and equal rights ") ; approval of Jackson's 
administration ; election of President by direct 
popular vote. They favored the doctrine of in- 
structions. They also advocated free trade and 
direct taxes. 1 They had some very sincere and 
pure-minded men among them, a large number of 
over-heated brains, and a still larger number of 
demagogues, who were seeking to organize the fac- 
tion as a means of making themselves so valuable 
that the regular managers would buy them. The 
equal rights men gained strength so rapidly that, 
on the 29th of October, 1835, they were able to 
offer battle to the old faction at a primary meeting 
in Tammany Hall, for the nomination of a con- 
gressman and other officers. The " regular " 
party entered the hall by the back entrance, and 
organized the meeting before the doors were 
opened. The anti-monopolists poured in, nomi- 
nated a chairman and elected him, ignoring the 
previous organization. The question of " equal 
rights" between the two chairmen was then set- 
tled in the old original method which has prevailed 
ever since there has been life on earth. The equal 
rights men dispossessed the other faction by force, 
and so proved the justice of their principles. The 
non-equal rights party then left the hall, but they 
" caused " the equal rights men " to be subjected 
to a deprivation of the right" to light by turning 
out the gas. The equal rights men were thus 
forced to test that theory of natural rights which 
1 Byrdsall, 103. 


affirms that said rights are only the chance to have 
good things, if one, can get them. In spite of their 
dogma of the equality of all men, which would 
make a prudent man no better than a careless one, 
and a man with capital no better than one with- 
out capital, the equal rights men had foreseen 
the emergency, and had provided themselves with 
capital in the shape of candles and loco-foco matches. 
They thus established their right to light, against 
nature and against their enemies. They duly 
adopted their platform, nominated a ticket, and 
adjourned. The regular leaders met elsewhere, 
nominated the ticket which they had previously 
prepared, and dispensed, for that occasion, with 
the ornamental and ceremonious formality of a 
primary meeting to nominate it. 

On the next day the " Courier and Enquirer " 
dubbed the equal rights party the loco-focos, and 
the name clung to them. 1 Hammond quotes a 
correspondent 2 who correctly declared that " the 
workingmen's party and the equal rights party 
have operated as causes, producing effects that 
will shape the course of the two great parties of 
the United States, and consequently the destinies 
of this great republic." The faction, at least in 
its better elements, evidently had convictions and 
a programme. It continued to grow. The " Even- 
ing Post " became its organ. That paper quarrelled 
with the administration on Kendall's order about 
the mails, and was thereupon formally read out of 
1 49 Niles, 162. 2 2 Hammond, 503. 


the party by the " Globe." l The loco-focos ceased 
to be a revolting faction. They acquired belliger- 
ent rights. The faction, however, in its internal 
economy ran the course of all factions. It went 
to extremes, and then began to split up. In Jan- 
uary, 1836, it declared its independence of the 
democratic-republican party. This alienated all 
who hated the party tyranny, but who wanted re- 
form in the party. The faction declared itself 
opposed to all acts of incorporation, and held that 
all such acts were repealable. It declared that 
representative institutions were only a practical 
convenience, and that Legislatures could not cre- 
ate vested rights. 2 Then it went on to adopt a 
platform of " equality of position, as well as of 

In October, 1836, Tammany made overtures to 
the equal rights men for a reunion, in preparation 
for the presidential election. Some of the loco-focos 
wanted to unite ; others refused. The latter were 
the men of conviction ; the former were the traders. 
The former called the latter " rumps ; " the latter 
called the former " buffaloes." 3 Only one stage 
now remained to complete the old and oft-repeated 
drama of faction. A man named Slamm, a blatant 
ignoramus, who, to his great joy, had been arrested 
by order of the Assembly of New York for con- 
tempt and breach of privilege, and who had pro- 
fited to the utmost by this incident to make a long 
w argument " against the " privilege " of an Ameri- 

i 49 NUes, 78. 2 Byrdsall, 41. 8 Byrdsall, 178. 


can Legislature, and to pose as a martyr to equal 
rights, secured his own election to the position of 
secretary of the equal rights party. He then se- 
cured a vote that no constitutional election could 
be held unless called by the secretary. He never 
would call one. There were those who thought 
that he sold out the party. 

Thus the faction perished ignominiously, but it 
was not without reason that its name passed, a 
little later, to the whole Jackson - Van Buren 
party ; i. e., to the radical anti-paper currency, not 
simply anti-United States Bank, wing of the na- 
tional democratic party. The equal rights men 
maintained impracticable doctrines of civil au- 
thority, and fantastic dogmas about equality, but 
when these were stripped away there remained in 
their platform sound doctrines and imperishable 
ideas. They first put the democratic party on 
the platform which for five or six years it had 
been trying to find. When it did find that plat- 
form it was most true to itself, and it contributed 
most to the welfare of the country. The demo- 
cratic party was for a generation, by tradition, a 
party of hard money, free trade, the non-inter- 
ference theory of government, and no special 
legislation. If that tradition be traced up to its 
source, it will lead back, not to the Jackson party 
of 1829, but to the loco-focos of 1835. 



THE attempt was made in 1834 to unite and 
organize the whole opposition to Jackson. Niles 
first mentions the party name "whig" in April, 
1834. 1 He says that it had come into use in Con- 
necticut and New York. It was adopted with an- 
tagonistic reference to the high prerogative and 
(as alleged) tory doctrines of Jackson. The anti- 
masons and national republicans ultimately merged 
in the new whig party, but time was required to 
bring about that result. In 1834 it was impos- 
sible. The anti-masons insisted on acting inde- 
pendently. Their candidate for President then 
was Francis Granger. 2 Clay would not run in 
1836, because he could not unite the opposition. 
He was disgusted with public life, and desired to 
retire. 3 

The administration party, on the other hand, 
was perfectly organized. The corps of federal 
office-holders had been driUed by the "Globe" 
into thorough discipline and perfect accord of 
energy and will. Each officer was held to " revere 

i 46 Niles, 101. 2 50 Niles, 234. a 9 Adams, 170. 


the chief," and to act in obedience to the indica- 
tions of his will which came through the " Globe." 
They did so. There was no faltering. There was 
only zealous obedience. It caused some bewilder- 
ment to remember that this was the party which 
had denounced Adams for using the federal officers 
to electioneer. Lewis had been known to interfere 
directly in elections, and Blair had done the same 
in his private capacity. 1 The party had been 
wonderfully held together. In 1830 there were 
only four anti- Jackson Legislatures in the Union, 
namely, in Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, 
and Delaware. In the six years from 1830 to 
1835, both inclusive, twenty-seven States held 162 
sessions of their Legislatures. Of these, 118 had 
Jackson majorities, 40 anti-Jackson, and 4 Cal- 
houn. 2 There was some talk of a third term for 
Jackson, but it never grew strong. The precedents 
were cited against it. Jackson's bad health and 
Van Buren's aspirations were perhaps stronger ob- 
jections. Adams says that Jackson had " wearied 
out the sordid subserviency of his supporters." 3 
That is not at all improbable. 

The democratic convention was held at Balti- 
more, May 20, 1835. Jackson had written to Ten- 
nessee, recommending that a convention should be 
held of " candidates fresh from the people." There 
were not wanting those who called this convention 
a caucus, and said that it was the old congressional 
monster in a new mask. Tennessee did not send 

1 40 Niles, 299. 2 63 Niles, 308. 8 9 Adams, 312. 



any delegates. Even Jackson could not bring that 
State to support Van Buren. Tennessee was a whig 
State until 1856. Her hostility to Van Buren was 
adroitly combined with that of Pennsylvania, in 
1844, by the selection of Polk as a candidate, to 
defeat Van Buren ; otherwise stated, it was the 
desire to combine these two States, in order to de- 
feat Van Buren, which led to the nomination of 
Polk. In 1835 a caucus of the New Hampshire 
Legislature, which nominated Hill for Governor, 
passed a resolution begging Tennessee not to divide 
the party. 1 Tennessee, however, had another very 
popular candidate, Hugh L. White, a former friend 
of Jackson, whom Jackson now hated as a traitor 
and renegade. 2 John Bell, the Speaker, was a 
supporter of White, and he and his friends claimed 
that they were not in opposition ; that they and 
White were good republicans, and that they pre- 
ferred White to the man whom Jackson had se- 
lected. 3 The " Globe " attacked Bell with bitter- 
ness. Jackson was greatly enraged, and exerted 
himself personally and directly against White. 4 
One Tennessee man, being in Baltimore when the 
convention was held, took upon himself to repre- 
sent that State. His name was Kucker, and to 
" ruckerize " passed into the political slang of the 
day, meaning to assume functions without creden- 

The Baltimore convention was largely composed 

1 48 Niles, 322. 

3 Bell's speech in 48 Niles, 334. 

2 See page 212. 
4 49 Niles, 35. 


of office-holders. Twenty-one States were repre- 
sented. 1 Andrew Stevenson, of Virginia, was chair- 
man. The two-thirds rule was adopted, because 
Van Buren was sure of two thirds. He actually 
got a unanimous vote, 265. For Vice-President, 
K. M. Johnson, of Kentucky, got 178 votes ; W. C. 
Rives, of Virginia, 87. The Virginia delegation 
declared, on the floor of the convention, that Vir- 
ginia would never vote for Johnson, because he 
favored tariff, bank, and internal improvements, 
and because they had no confidence in his prin- 
ciples or character. 2 Van Buren, in his letter of 
acceptance, 3 said that he had been mentioned as 
Jackson's successor "more through the ill-will of 
opponents than the partiality of friends." That 
statement was so adroit that it would take a page 
to tell whether it was true or not. He made a full 
and eager declaration that he had asked for no 
man's support. He said that he would " endeavor 
to tread generally in the footsteps of President 
Jackson, happy if I shall be able to perfect the 
work which he has so gloriously begun." Johnson, 
in his letter of acceptance, 4 declared that he was 
opposed to the old Bank, or to one like it, but 
thought that such a bank as Jackson talked of in 
his earliest messages might be a good thing. On 
tariff and internal improvements he said that he 
agreed with Jackson. Van Buren was fifty-four 
years of age and Johnson fifty-six. Johnson had 

1 48 Niles, 207, 227, 244. 2 Ibid. 248. 

8 Ibid. 257. * Ibid. 329. 


been in Congress ever since 1807, except during 
the second war with England, when he took the 
field. He served with some distinction, but a 
ridiculous attempt to credit him with the killing 
of Tecumseh has caused his real merits to be for- 
gotten. As a public man he managed to be as 
near as possible to the head of every popular move- 
ment, and to get his name connected with it, but 
he never contributed assistance to any public busi- 
ness. His name is also met with frequently as a 
messenger, middle-man, manipulator, and general 
efficiency man of the Jackson party. He made a 
report, in 1829, on the question of running the 
mails on Sunday, which was one of his claims to 
fame. It was written for him by the Rev. O. B. 
Brown. 1 A chance was found in this report to 
utter some noble sentiments on religious liberty, 
and to lay down some specifications of American 
principles in that regard which were not likely to 
provoke contradiction. This valuable production 
was printed on cloth, and hung up in stage offices 
and bar-rooms all over the country. Johnson had 
nourished presidential aspirations for some years. 
He did not abandon them till 1844. 

The an ti- Jackson men, in 1834-35, were opposed, 
on principle, to a national convention. They said 
that the convention was King Caucus revived. 
The anti-masons held a State convention at Harris- 
burg, December 16, 1835. 2 It was decided not to 

1 See page 409. Kendall's Autobiography, 107. 

2 49 Niles, 265, 287. 


call a national convention. They thought the free 
action of the people would be best brought out by 
State conventions. They nominated William H. 
Harrison by 89 votes to 29 for Webster and 3 for 
Granger. For Vice-President, Granger got 102 
votes ; Hugh L. White, 5 ; William Slade, of Ver- 
mont, 5 ; and William A. Palmer, of Vermont, 7. 
The whigs of Pennsylvania adopted the nomina- 
tions of the anti-masons, and coalesced with them. 
Webster was very anxious, at this time, to be 
nominated and supported by the whigs. It pleases 
some people to think that Webster ought not to 
have had this ambition. He was a strange com- 
pound of the greatest powers and some mean traits. 
To such a man the presidential ambition is very 
sure to mean moral shipwreck. Still, it was not 
wrong for Webster to want the proofs of success 
in his career. His dissatisfaction was well founded 
when, after his splendid services, he saw William 
Henry Harrison preferred before him ; and it is a 
point which deserves careful attention, that, if 
Webster's just ambition had been fairly gratified, 
he would have been a better man. He was nomi- 
nated by the Legislature of Massachusetts. 

Hugh L. White, of Tennessee, was nominated 
by the Legislatures of Alabama, Tennessee, and 
Illinois. Judge McLean was nominated in Ohio. 
He had had presidential aspirations ever since 
1828. 1 The Northern whigs supported Harrison, 
and the Southern whigs supported White. Thus 

1 Kendall's Autobiography, 304. 


the opposition went into the campaign disorganized 
and devoted to defeat. When we consider the 
earnestness with which they all opposed Jackson 
and Jaeksonism, and also the demonstration they 
had suffered, in 1832, of the consequences of divi- 
sion and tactical imbecility, it is amazing that 
they should have entered upon another campaign 
so divided and discordant as to be defeated before 
they began. 

Harrison and White were of the same age, sixty- 
three. Harrison was a man of no education. He 
had done some good service as an Indian fighter. 
The anti-Jackson men, who had derided Jackson's 
candidature because he was not a statesman, se- 
lected, in Harrison, the man nearest like him 
whom they could find. They hoped to work up a 
popularity for him on the model of Jackson's popu- 
larity. 1 Harrison answered the anti-masons that 
he was not a mason, and did not like masonry, but 
that the federal government had nothing to do 
with that subject. This did not satisfy Thaddeus 
Stevens, who wanted Webster. 2 White has been 
mentioned several times. He had a fair education 
and a good character, and he was very much re- 
spected, but he was a person of only ordinary 

During the winter of 1835-36 there was a great 
struggle in the House over a contested election in 


1 For an estimate of Harrison, written in 1828, which is perhaps 
too highly colored to quote, see 7 Adams, 530. 

2 9 Adams, 273. 


North Carolina. It was thought very probable 
that the presidential election might be thrown into 
the House, and the vote of North Carolina might 
decide the result. The sitting member (Graham) 
was unseated, and the case was referred back for 
a new election. 

There were two States whose admission was 
pending when the election approached, Arkansas 
and Michigan. In 1835 Michigan became involved 
in a boundary dispute with Ohio. The act which 
organized the territory of Michigan, January 11, 
1805, described, as its southern boundary, a due 
east and west line running through the southern- 
most point of Lake Michigan. The Constitution 
of Ohio gave that State, as its northern boundary, 
a line drawn from the southernmost point of Lake 
Michigan to the northernmost cape of Maurnee 
Bay. Indiana's northern boundary had been de- 
scribed as a due east and west line ten miles north 
of the southernmost point of Lake Michigan. The 
northern boundary of Illinois had been placed on 
the parallel of 42 30'. Michigan, therefore, found 
her territory reduced. Jackson, at first, on the 
advice of Butler, the Attorney-General, took the 
side of Michigan. The people of Michigan held a 
convention in September, 1835, and framed a Con- 
stitution, which was to go into effect in November. 
In October, the Assistant Secretary of State, As- 
bury Dickens, wrote, at the President's orders, 
that no such reorganization of the government 
could take place without the consent of Congress. 

THE VOTE OF 1836 447 

It was a case of squatterism. 1 In 1835-36 there 
was some danger of an armed collision between 
Ohio and Michigan ; but it is not easy, on account 
of the rhetoric which was then in fashion, to 
judge how great this danger was. June 15, 1836, 
Arkansas and Michigan were admitted together; 
but Michigan was put under the condition that she 
must accept the southern boundary which would 
result from the northern lines of Indiana and 
Ohio, and accept compensation on the peninsula 
north of Lake Michigan. 2 The Legislature of 
Michigan, in July, called a convention, which met 
September 26th, and rejected the condition. On 
the 5th and 6th of December, by the spontaneous 
action of the people, delegates were elected to a 
convention, which met December 14, 1836, and 
assented to the condition. Jackson, in a message, 
December 26th, informed Congress of the action 
of Michigan. 3 Michigan was admitted January 
26, 1837. She offered a vote in the presidential 
election. In announcing the vote, the vote of 
Michigan was included in the alternative form. 

In the spring of 1836, Sherrod Williams inter- 
rogated the candidates for President. Harrison 4 
favored distribution of the surplus revenue and of 
the revenue from lands ; opposed internal improve- 
ments, except for works of national scope and im- 
portance; would charter a bank, but with great 

1 See page 9. 

2 J. Q. Adams was greatly incensed at the wroug to Michi- 
gan. 9 Adams, 342. 8 51 Niles, 278. * 51 Niles, 23. 


reservations ; thought that neither House of Con- 
gress had a right to expunge anything from its 
records. Van Buren opposed national bank, inter- 
nal improvements, and all distribution. The equal 
rights men interrogated the candidates. The com- 
mittee reported that they were greatly pleased with 
Johnson's replies, but that Van Buren's were un- 
satisfactory. Many " irreconcilable " equal rights 
men refused to vote for Van Buren. He had not 
yet become fully identified with that wing of the 
national democratic party which took up the essen- 
tial features of the loco-foco doctrine. 

In the election l Van Buren received 170 votes, 
counting 3 of Michigan ; Harrison, 73 ; White, 
26 (Georgia and Tennessee) ; Webster, 14 (Mas- 
sachusetts) ; W. P. Mangum, of North Carolina, 
11 (South Carolina). Van Buren's majority over 
all was 46. Van Buren's and Harrison's votes 
were well distributed geographically. Van Buren 
carried Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, 
Connecticut, .New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, 
North Carolina^ Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, 
Illinois, Missouri, Arkansas, Michigan. Harrison 
carried Vermont, New Jersey, Delaware, Mary- 
land, Kentucky, Ohio, and Indiana. The popular 
vote was : for Van Buren, 761,549 ; for all others, 
736,656; Van Buren's majority, 24,893. 2 For 
Vice-President, R. M. Johnson got 147 votes ; 

1 58 Niles,392. 

2 American Almanac for 1880. The figures in Niles are full of 
obvious errors. 


Francis Granger, 77; John Tyler, 47; William 
Smith, of Alabama, 23 (Virginia). As no one 
had a majority, the Senate elected Johnson. In 
January, 1837, Webster wrote to Massachusetts 1 
that he should resign his seat. He intended to 
retire from public life, at least temporarily. 

Van Buren was now at the height of his am- 
bition ; but the financial and commercial storm 
which had been gathering for two or three years, 
the accumulated result of rash ignorance and vio- 
lent self-will acting on some of the most delicate 
social interests, was just ready to burst. High 
prices and high rents had already before the elec- 
tion produced strikes, trades-union conflicts, and 
labor riots, 2 things which were almost unprece- 
dented in the United States. The price of flour 
was so high that 493,100 bushels of wheat were 
imported at New York in 1836, and 857,000 bushels 
before April, in 1837. 3 Socialistic notions of 
course found root, and flourished like weeds^ at 
such a time. An Englishwoman, named Fanny 
Wright, became notorious for public teachings 
of an " emancipated " type. The loco-focos were 
charged with socialistic notions, not without justice. 
There were socialists amongst them. The meeting 
held in the City Hall Park, at New York, February 
13, 1837, out of which the " bread riots " sprang, 
was said to have been called by them. They cer- 
tainly had habituated the city populace to public 

1 2 Webster's Correspondence, 25 et seq. 

2 48 Niles, 171 ; 50 Niles, 130. 52 Niles, 147. 


meetings, at which the chance crowd of idlers was 
addressed as " the people," with all the current 
catch-words and phrases, and at which blatant ora- 
tors, eager for popularity and power, harangued 
the crowd about banks, currency, and vested rights. 
Of course in these harangues violence of manner 
and language made up for poverty of ideas, and 
the minds of the hearers were inflamed all the 
more because they could understand nothing of 
what the orators said, except that those addressed 
were being wronged by somebody. On that day 
in February the crowd got an idea which it under- 
stood. 1 Some one said : Let us go to Hart [a pro- 
vision merchant], and offer him eight dollars a 
barrel for his flour. If he will not take it ! In 
a few hours the mob destroyed five hundred barrels 
of flour and one thousand bushels of wheat. The 
militia were needed to restore order. 2 The park 
meetings were continued. 

The commercial crisis burst on the country just 
at the beginning of March, when Jackson's term 
ended. There was a kind of poetic justice in the 
fact that Van Buren had to bear the weight of all 
the consequences of Jackson's acts which Van 
Buren had allowed to be committed, because he 
would not hazard his standing in Jackson's favor 
by resisting them. Van Buren disliked the reputa- 
tion of a wire-puller and intriguer, but he had well 

1 Byrdsall (103) says that the riot was not the fault of the loco- 

2 51 Niles, 403. 


earned his title, the "little magician," by the 
dexterity with which he had manoeuvred himself 
across the slippery arena of Washington politics 
and up to the first place. He had just the temper 
for a politician. Nothing ruffled him. He was 
thick-skinned, elastic, and tough. He did not win 
confidence from anybody. He was, however, a 
man of more than average ability, and he appears 
to have been conscious of lowering himself by the 
political manoeuvring which he had practised. As 
President he showed the honorable desire to have a 
statesman-like and high-toned administration, and 
perhaps to prove that he was more than a creature 
of Jackson's whim. He could not get a fair chance. 
The inheritances of party virulence and distrust 
which he had taken over from Jackson were too 
heavy a weight. He lost his grip on the machine 
without winning the power of a statesman. He 
never was able to regain control in the party. 
American public life is constituted out of great 
forces, which move on in a powerful stream, under 
constantly changing phases and combinations, which 
it is hard to foresee. Chance plays a great role. 
If a man, by a chance combination of circum- 
stances, finds himself in one of the greater cur- 
rents of the stream, he may be carried far and 
high, and may go on long ; but if another chance 
throws him out, his career is, almost always, ended 
forever. The course of our political history is 
strewn with men who were for a moment carried 
high enough to have great ambitions and hopes 


excited, but who, by some turn in the tide, were 
stranded, and left to a forgotten and disappointed 
old age. Van Buren illustrated these cases. 

Parton quotes a letter of Jackson to Trist, 1 writ- 
ten March 2, 1837, in which he says : " On the 4th 
I hope to be able to go to the Capitol to witness 
the glorious scene of Mr. Van Buren, once rejected 
by the Senate, sworn into office by Chief Justice 
Taney, also being rejected by the factious Senate." 
The election of Van Buren is thus presented as 
another personal triumph of Jackson, and another 
illustration of his remorseless pursuit of success 
and vengeance in a line in which any one had dared 
to cross him. This exultation was the temper in 
which he left office. He was satisfied and trium- 
phant. Not another President in the whole list 
ever went out of office in a satisfied frame of mind, 
much less with a feeling of having completed a 
certain career in triumph. 2 

On the 7th of March Jackson set out for Ten- 
nessee. He was surrounded to the last with affec- 
tion and respect. On his way home he met more 
than the old marks of attention and popularity. 
IJe was welcomed back to Nashville as he had 
been every time that he had returned for twenty 
years past. These facts were not astonishing. 
He retained his popularity. Hence he was still a 

1 3 Parton, 624. 

2 When Jackson went out of office many satirical copper coins, 
like cents, in derision of his sayings and doings, were issued. 
Amer. Journ. Numism. Oct. 1869, 42. 


power. It was still worth while to court him and 
to get his name in favor of a man or a measure. 
Nevertheless, it does not appear that he actually 
exerted any great influence at Washington. He 
could not get an appointment for his nephew as a 
naval cadet, although he applied for it frequently, 
at least, if he did succeed, the evidence of it is 
not in the letters before us. In 1842, he, like 
nearly all his neighbors, was in pecuniary distress. 
Two or three persons came forward to offer loans 
to him, out of respect and affection, but the ne- 
gotiations fell through for reasons which are not 
explained. At last Lewis obtained a loan for him 
from Blair. 

Financial revulsions always bring to light many 
defalcations and embezzlements. The number of 
these revealed, 1837-42, was very great, including 
a number by public officers. That of Swartwout 
furnished a striking parallel to the case of Wat- 
kins, under Adams, which Jackson had so ruth- 
lessly exploited against his predecessor. 1 The 
Swartwout case is several times referred to in the 
Ford MSS. in letters to Lewis. 

" I shall enquire of Mf Love Executioner of his fa- 
thers estate, to be informed whether any of Major Lees 
manuscript is left there. I hope for the cause you have 
named, Major Lee has not destroyed the manuscript 
you know, I readily would have renewed his nomination 
to the Senate, had I at any time been informed that the 
Senate would have confirmed the nomination but it 
1 See page 189. 


appears to me that those I have had the greatest confi- 
dence in, and served most, have acted with bad faith, 
and violated that confidence reposed ! Is it true that 
Mf Samuel Swartwant is really a defaulter and if a 
defaulter, to what amount, please to give me the time, 
& the amount. ... Is it known when he commenced 
the use of the Public funds where he is, & if expected 
back to america 

" I had great confidence in his honesty, honor & in- 
tegrity, and appointed him to the office on the sheer 
grounds of his integrity & against a powerful influence 
and I still hope he will relieve me from the slanders 
the Whigg papers are heaping upon me that ' I knew 
of his using the public money in speculation, & in aid 
of the Texians ' a greater & more foul slander never 
was uttered." (Dec. 10, 1838.) " The defalcation of 
Swartwant & Price has given great pain how he could 
so far depart from his sacred pledges often made to me 
that he would touch not, handle not of the public money 
for any thing but as prescribed by law. As an honora- 
ble man he ought to come out & do justice to the ad- 
ministration & unfold to the public how the money has 
been applyed & in whose hands it is the greatest part 
must be in the hands of the merchants give me your 
views on this subject." (March 4, 1839.) " I rejoice 
to learn that MF Swartwant is likely to wipe away part 
of the indebtedness & to close his indebtedness with the 
Government. I had great confidence in him, and that 
business gave me more pain than any, & all others dur- 
ing my administration I still wish him well." (May 
23, 1842.) 

Jackson and Lewis nearly came to a quarrel in 
1839. Jackson wanted Lewis to resign his office, 


but Lewis cluDg to it, and argued like a good civil 
service reformer against his own removal. He was 
a " conservative," and differed from Van Buren 
on financial measures. 

" I have not heard," wrote Jackson, " one of your 
true triends, but regretted your remaining at Washing- 
ton, and you must well conceive that your remaining 
until removed would be truly mortifying to me, all 
things considered ... You must well recollect how 
much complaint there were and murmuring by your 
acquaintances in Nashvill for my placing you in office 
and keeping you there I ballanced not, but kept you 
there regardless of their growls to the end of my term at 
which you had always said you would retire." 

One cannot avoid a recognition of retributive 
justice to find Lewis writing : 

" I have been here too long and am too well acquainted 
with the manner in which public sentiment, so called, 
is manifactured in this city, to place the least confidence 
in news paper articles upon such subjects. The most 
of them I know are, and have been heretofore, written 
in the Departments here, (the Treasury and Post Office 
Depts are filled with newspaper editors) and sent to 
Penn a Ohio, and other states for publication, which are 
then carefully collected and republished in a little dirty 
paper in this city (which is no doubt sent to you) as 
evidence of public sentiment! These things may im- 
pose upon the ignorant, or unsuspecting, but they can- 
not decieve me nor do they decieve any other person 
here who is acquainted with the unprincipled and reck- 
less course of those whose business it is to blacken the 


character of every body whose office they desire for 
themselves, or their particular friends." 

Lewis was removed by Polk, in 1845. He did 
not like it, and he took to writing complaints and 
protests in the newspapers, just like an ordinary 

A large part of the letters in the Ford collection 
belong to the period after Jackson's retirement. 
They do not show Jackson beset by visitors anxious 
to get the benefit of his influence, although he is 
shown as greatly interested in public affairs. He 
rejoiced greatly when Tyler quarrelled with the 

"The Presidents message, [of 1841], for the most 
part is good & well said. That part of it which relates 
to a fiscal agent, the moment I read it, I regretted to 
see it introduced, the paper money system treasury 
notes to be issued as a circulating paper currency. . . . 
When the system was adopted by congress, to substitute 
treasury notes, instead of borrowing, I was opposed to 
the plan upon constitutional grounds and so wrote my 
friends in congress, both as to its unconstitutionality 
and to its expediency. Congress has the express power 
to borrow, but not to issue bills of credit, or make a 
paper currency The government cannot pay a debt 
legally, but in gold & silver coin, how absurd then to 
collect the revenue in paper in which it cannot comply 
with the powers with which it is invested. . . . Ours 
was intended to be a hard money government. . . . 
The duty of the government is to leave commerce to its 
own capital & credit as well as all other branches of 
business protecting all in their legal pursuits, granting 


exclusive privileges to none Foster the labour of 
our country by an undeviating metalic currency for its 
surplus, allway recollecting that if labour is depressed 
neither commerce, or manufactories, can flourish, as 
they are both based upon the production of labour, pro- 
duced from the earth, or the mineral world. It is 
unjust to them by legislation to depress labour by a 
depreciated currency with the idea of prospering com- 
merce &c which is in reallity injured by it " 

The subject which interested him most of all, 
however, was the annexation of Texas. He was 
very ill and infirm, and every letter contains its 
paragraph of description of his ailments and dis- 
tress, yet he writes letter after letter to Lewis, re- 
iterating the same ideas in almost the same words. 
This interest was so obvious, and so consistent 
with his favorite life-long ideas, that we wonder 
why, when he was President, the acquisition of 
Texas was not the chief object of his policy. 

""How degrading," he writes, in 1842, "the scenes 
in the House of Representatives it is painful that 
old man [J. Q. Adams] who must be deranged or 
superlatively wicked, should be permitted to disgrace our 
country by such behaviour his constituents ought to 
call him home and the House at once should censure 
him and proceed with business ; and if he again mis- 
behaves expell him." 

"I would regret much that President Tyler should 
go against the annexation of Texas, and leave it under 
the influence of great Britain, which may be converted 


to our great injury & jeopardize the safety of Neworleans 
& our slaves should he do this act of folly, his political 
star sets forever." (Oct., 1843.) 

These are the ideas of constant repetition, the 
slave consideration being foremost in importance. 1 

u If possible this treaty [of March, 1844] ought not 
be known of until it is sent to the senate If it is, 
that wicked & reckless old man John Q. Adams, will 
write hundreds of memorials & send them over the 
whole country to get signers and all the abolitionists 
& many more will sign them I hope the senate will 
act so promptly, that before he can get his memorials & 
petitions distributed & signed & returned to congress 
the treaty will be ratified." 

In 1843 a public letter was obtained from him 
favoring the annexation of Texas. This letter was 
evidently prepared for him after the fashion of 
Lewis. It was held back for a year, and then 
published with a false date. So Jackson was used 
by the annexation clique to ruin his friend Van 
Buren. The party, which he and Van Buren had 
consolidated, passed, by the Texas intrigue, away 
from Van Buren and under the control of the 
slavery wing of it. The last-mentioned letter of 
Jackson brought him again into collision with 
Adams, for in it Jackson repeated his former as- 
sertions that he had always disapproved of the 
treaty of 1819, and of the boundary of the Sabine. 
Adams produced the entries in his " Diary " as 

1 See a letter from Jackson, reiterating the same ideas, pub- 
lished in the N. Y. Times, June 16, 1897. 

ELECTION OF 1844 459 

proof to the contrary. The passage from the 
Diary l shows that Jackson thought that the bound- 
ary ought to be the Rio Grande, but that he con- 
sented to the Sabine as the best which could be 
got. He remembered the former position ; Adams 
insisted on the second. Jackson also made use of 
Erving's statements to him, in 1829, 2 as foundation 
for a charge which his agents pushed with great 
energy, in 1844, that Adams had given away his 
country's interests in 1819. 3 Adams was able to 
show that Erving's statements had been misunder- 
stood or were incorrect. 

As the election of 1844 approached, Jackson 
became more and more interested in it. He wrote 
to Lewis, September 12, 1843 : 

" If the Madisonian had left M r . Tyler to be judged 
of by his acts, he would have met with a much better sup- 
port from the Democracy but the people believe, that 
these papers are trying to raise a third party under the 
name of Tyler, not for his benefit, but for M r Calhouns, 
and you now see the meetings begin to shew their choice 
to be Van Buren, and this will increase until the Balti- 
more convention settle the question, and that will be on 
Van Buren mark this prophesy This diffidence 
of our friend Cass, was ill timed, & very injudicious, and 
for the present, has done him, in Ohio, a great political 
injury and the attack of the Calhoun papers on V. B. 
has done Calhoun a greater injury and united the De- 
mocracy upon V. B. " 

1 Cited above, page 84. 2 See page 415. 

12 Adams, 93, 101, 123. 


When, however, Van Buren flinched on annex- 
ation, Jackson abandoned him. Letters signed by 
him, favoring Polk, were constantly circulated 
through the newspapers. Probably he was mor- 
tified that Clay carried Tennessee, although by 
only 113 majority in a vote of 120,000. His 
share in this campaign was his last public activity. 
He died June 8, 1845. He had had honors be- 
yond anything which his own heart had ever cov- 
eted. His successes had outrun his ambition. 
He had held more power than any other Amer- 
ican had ever possessed. He had named his succes- 
sor. He had been idolized by the great majority 
of his countrymen, and had been surfeited with 
adulation. He had been thwarted in hardly any- 
thing on which he had set his heart. He had 
had his desire upon all his enemies. He lived to 
see Clay defeated again, and to help to bring it 
about. He saw Calhoun retire in despair and dis- 
gust. He saw the Bank in ruins ; Biddle arraigned 
on a criminal charge, and _ then dead broken- 
hearted. In his last years he joined the church, 
and, on that occasion, under the exhortations of 
his spiritual adviser, he professed to forgive all his 
enemies in a body, although it is otherwise asserted 
that he excepted those who had slandered his wife. 
It does not appear that he ever repented of any- 
thing, ever thought that he had been in the wrong 
in anything, or ever forgave an enemy as a specific 


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ABERDEEN, LORD, satisfied with Jack- 
sou's offer regarding West India 
trade, 215. 

Abolitionists, their origin and growth, 
410 ; send documents to the South, 

Adair, General John, remonstrates 
with Jackson for accusing Kentucky 
troops of cowardice, 46 ; as gover- 
nor of Kentucky, supports " relief " 
acts, 163 ; petitions for redress, 164. 

Adams, John, prevents war with 
France, 31 ; unfairly blamed for 
alien and sedition acts, 255 ; on re- 
sponsibility of Treasury Department 
to House, 353. 

Adams, John Quincy, on motives of 
Congress in refunding Jackson's 
fine, 57 ; defends Jackson's course 
hi Florida, 80; vindicates it to 
Spain and England, 82 ; friendly re- 
lations with Jackson, 82 ; says vice- 
presidency would be a good retreat 
for Jackson's old age, 82 ; his de- 
fence of Jackson plausible but un- 
sound, 83 ; his case against Arbuth- 
not, 83 ; consults Jackson on Texan 
boundary, 84 ; jeports Jackson -as 
willing to abandon Texan claim, 
84, 85; on plan to nominate Clay 
for Vice-President hi 1820, 92 ; re- 
ceives one electoral vote, 92 ; recog- 
nizes strength of Jackson as candi- 
date, 99 ; his public services, party 
connections, and character as candi- 
date, 102-104 ; his estimate of Cal- 
houn, 104, 105; friendly with Cal- 
houn, 105 ; on Crawford's quarrels 
with Monroe, 107 ; on Benton's 
motives for supporting Jackson, 
114 ; refuses to appoint Benton to 
office, 114; electoral and popular 
vote for, 115 ; on the infatuation 

of Pennsylvania for Jackson, 115 ; 
elected President by House, 116; 
his encounter with Jackson after 
election, 117 ; gives Clay State De- 
partment, 118 ; accused by Jackson 
of a corrupt bargain, 119; Clay's 
reasons for supporting, 120 ; thought 
a less dangerous rival for Clay than 
Jackson, 120 ; not at first the object 
of Jackson's resentment, 122 ; de- 
nies the bargain story, 123 ; his re- 
lations with Clay unfriendly before 
1824, 124 ; approached by Letcher 
with suggestion to appoint Clay, 
124 ; told by Clay of purpose to 
vote for him, 124 ; asked by Scott 
to appoint Clay, refuses to promise, 
125 ; urged by Webster not to pro- 
scribe federalists, 125; hated by 
.federalists, 125 ; conscious of his 
lack of support, 134 ; rendered un- 
popular by bargain cry, 136; his 
theory of presidency, 138 ; wishes 
to guide and suggest national im- 
provements, 138, 139 ; makes no at- 
tempt to create an administration 
party, 141 ; offers Treasury to Craw- 
ford, 141 ; appoints Rush, a politi- 
cal opponent, 141 ; refuses to aid 
election of Mason, 141 ; refuses to 
punish officials for opposition, 142 ; 
refuses to appoint friends to office, 
142 ; refuses to bid f9r popularity 
with Germans, 142 ; refuses to dis- 
miss McLean, 142, 143 ; refuses to 
correct a slander, 143 ; his inter- 
view with Binns, 143 ; his adminis- 
tration in a minority, 143, 144; 
slanders against, in campaign of 
1828, 145, 146 ; still refuses to dis- 
miss McLean, 146 ; controversy with 
Giles and with New England feder- 
alists about changing party in 1807, 



147 ; electoral and popular vote for, 
148, 149 ; his administration too un- 
worldly, 149 ; compared with that 
of his father, 149 ; refusal of Jack- 
son to call upon, 179 ; hurt at the 
slight, 180 ; failure of attempt to 
reconcile with Jackson, 180; his 
mortification at discovery of Wat- 
kins's defalcation, 189 n. ; on reasons 
for rejection of Hill's nomination by 
Senate, 191 ; refuses to run on ticket 
with Crawford, 198 ; refers to quar- 
rel between Galhoun and Jackson, 
209 ; says Jackson offered War De- 
partment to Drayton, 212 ; on Jack- 
son's attitude in Peck impeachment 
case, 220; as President, appoints 
agent to investigate Creek treaty, 
222 ; orders Gaines to prevent tres- 
pass on Creek lands, 222 ; defied by 
Troup, 222 ; unpopular in South- 
west for protecting Indians, 224 ; 
on Stevenson's election as Speaker, 
241; his attitude toward tariff of 
1828, 251 n. ; chairman of Commit- 
tee on Manufactures, 262 ; wishes 
to pay debt and then lower duties, 
263 ; proposes abolition of Phi Beta 
Kappa, 294j^ an anti-mason, 295 ; 
his report on the Bank, 302; on 
branch drafts, 303 ; on Bank's sales 
of coin, 303; on Bank's share in 
internal improvements, 304; on 
charge of non-user against Bank, 
305 ; on charge of Bank's subsidiz- 
ing press, 305 ; objects to loans by 
Bank to members of Congress, 310 ; 
disgusted at Harvard's compliment 
to Jackson, 350 ; accuses Jackson of 
posing, 350 ; his report on currency, 
389; sustains Jackson's attitude 
toward France, 405 ; negotiates in 
1819 concerning western boundary 
of Louisiana, 412 ; as President, 
orders Poinsett to buy Texas, 413 ; 
said by Jackson to have prevented 
annexation of Texas in 1836, 418 ; 
his speech against war for Texas, 
420; on factiousness of politics, 
430 ; denounced by Jackson for his 
opposition to Texas, 457, 458 ; con- 
troversy with Jackson as to latter's 
position on Texas in 1819, 458, 459. 

Adams, Mrs. J. Q., gives a ball in 
honor of Jackson, 104. 

Alabama, opposes a congressional 
caucus, 109 ; resents expulsion of 
intruders from Cherokee territory, 
228 ; denounces tariff, 256, 257, 335 ; 
opposes nullification, 335 ; nomi- 
nates White in 1836, 444. 

Albany Regency, controlled by Van 
Buren, 111 ; tries to prevent choice 
of electors in New York by people, 
111 ; loses control of Legislature to 
" people's party," 111. 

Alien and sedition laws, less tyran- 
nical than embargo, 32. 

Ambrister, Robert, captured by Jack- 
son in Florida, 74 ; his questiona- 
ble status, 74, 75 ; condemned to be 

i shot, his sentence commuted, 75 ; 
ordered by Jackson to be hanged, 

Anti-masons, origin of, 289-293 ; dis- 
rupt old political parties, 292 ; hold 
convention at Utica, their prin- 
ciples, 293 ; spread into Pennsylva- 
nia and New England, 293; hold 
national conventions and nominate 

. Wirt for President, 294, 295 ; their 
relations with Clay, 295; decline 
to call a convention in 1836, 443; 
nominate Harrison for presidency, 

Arbuthnot, Alexander, seized by Jack- 
son in Florida, 72; his relations 
with Indians, 73 ; tells his son to 
remove goods from Jackson's ad- 
vance, 73 ; considered by Jackson 
to have warned Indians, 73 ; tried 
and condemned on charge of incit- 
ing Creeks to war, 74 ; his con- 
demnation unwarranted, 74, 78 ; 
hanged by Jackson's order, 75; 
Adams's case against, plausible, 
but unsound, 83. 

Arkansas, admitted as a State, 446, 

Armstrong, John, his advice to Jack- 
son about invading Florida in 1814, 

Aury, Louis de, a pirate in Florida, 

Avery, Colonel Waightstill, his duel 
with Jackson, 20. 



BACHE, , defaulting postmaster, 

reluctantly removed by McLean, 

Balch, Alfred, letter of Crawford to, 
on Calhoun, 198. 

Baldwin, Judge Henry, in case of 
Briscoe vs. Bank of Kentucky, 423. 

Bank of Commonwealth of Kentucky 
v*. Wister, 174. 

Bank of the United States, estab- 
lishes branches in Kentucky, 155 ; 
accused by Kentucky banks of 
causing panic, 156, 160 ; declared 
constitutional by Supreme Court, 
160, 166; opposition to, in Ken- 
tucky, and attempt to tax, 160, 166 ; 
denounced by Desha, 169, 170 ; pop- 
ular fear of, as " money power," 
264, 265 ; events leading to rechar- 
ter in 1816, 265, 266 ; its charter, 
267, 268 ; its bad management prior 
to 1819, 268, 269 ; reorganized by 
Cheves, 269 ; its status under Bid- 
die, 270 ; invents and misuses branch 
drafts, 270, 271 ; attacked by Bar- 
bour, 271 ; hated by Woodbury and 
Hill because of Portsmouth branch 
affair, 271-278 ; accused by Ingliam 
of using influence in politics, 272, 
274 ; defended by Biddle, 273-276 ; 
threatened by Ingham, 276, 277 ; 
attempt of Jackson's followers to 
use, in behalf of administration, 
277 ; origin of anti-Bank clique, 
277-279 ; attack upon, predicted by 
Kendall, 280 ; attacked by Jackson 
in message, 280, 28l ; its constitu- 
tionality unquestioned in 1829, 283 ; 
defended by McDuffle and Smith, 
284; again attacked by Jackson, 
285 ; connection of Tyler's views 
on, with Jackson's, 286, 287 ; sus- 
tained in Congress, 286, 287 ; sup- 
ported by McLane, 288 ; diminu- 
tion of Jackson's hostility to, in 
1831, 288; dragged by Clay into 
campaign of 1832, 297, 298 ; peti- 
tions for renewal of charter, 300 ; 
its case mismanaged by Dallas, 300 ; 
report of McDuffie upon, 301 ; in- 
vestigation of, by committee, 301, 
302 ; reports for and against, 302 ; 
charges against, 302-310; really 

questionable only in matter of 
branch drafts, 311 ; doubtfulness of 
Biddle's veracity, 311 ; really dam- 
aged by Bank drafts, 312 ; false 
theory of, held by Biddle, 313-315 ; 
suffers from heavy payments on 
public debt, 315 ; refusal of Jack- 
son to compromise with, 318 ; re- 
charter passed, 319 ; vetoed by 
Jackson, 319, 320 ; its share in elec- 
tion o-1832, 320 ; opposed by local 
banks, 320; attempts to extend 
loans, 339, 340; called unsafe by 
Jacksou, 340; reported safe by 
Verplanck, 341 ; ceases to contract 
loans, 342 ; critical condition of its 
western branches, 342, 343 ; declared 
safe by House, 343 ; loses through 
failure of France to meet draft of 
United States, 344, 345; attempts 
to retain part of a dividend, 345; 
lawsuits against, on this point, 345 ; 
proposal to remove deposits from, 
345-347 ; animus of attack upon, 
346, /349; Jackson's opinion of, 
352; curtails debts, 353; depos- 
its removed from, 354, 356-359 ; 
replies to paper read to cabinet, 
355 ; insincere defence of, 356 ; fail- 
ure of bill to recharter, 357 ; at- 
tempt of Taney to protect pet 
banks from, 359 ; accused by Jack- 
son of political action, and of man- 
ufacturing a panic, 360, 370, 371; 
Taney's reasons for removal of 
deposits from, 361 ; petitions Con- 
gress against removal of deposits, 
361 ; further complaints of Jack- 
son against, 363, 374, 375, 400 ; in- 
vestigated by Senate and House, 
368, 369; disputes with Treasury 
over branch drafts, 374 ; further 
dealings with Treasury, 375 ; final 
words of Jackson against, 375, 
376 ; failure to investigate transac- 
tions of members of Congress with, 
376; loans capital and sells branches, 
395 ; aids, after New York fire, 395 ; 
gets a charter from Pennsylvania, 
its corrupt character, 395, 396 ; dis- 
cussion of its financial honesty, 397 ; 
its career, after 1836, destroys con- 
fidence, 397, 398; career coutinu- 



ous, 398 ; unsound from the out- 
set, 399 ; its final dealings with Uni- 
ted States, 399, 400 ; its failures in 
1838-1841, 400 ; called an obsolete 
idea, even by whigs, 401. 

Bank of United States vs. Halsted, 

Bank of United States vs. Ranters' 
Bank, 167. 

Barbour, Philip P., proposes to sell 
stock held by United States in Bank, 
271 ; appointed to Supreme Court, 

Barry, William T., chief justice of 
Kentucky new Court of Appeals, 
165 ; defeated for Governor of Ken- 
tucky, 174 ; Postmaster - General, 
182 ; the tool of the kitchen cabi- 
net, 187 ; asked to retain office in 
1831, 209; favors removal of de- 
posits, 346; his inefficient manage- 
ment of post-office, 409 ; refuses to 
answer questions of investigating 
committee, 409 ; succeeded by Ken- 
dall, 409 ; appointed minister to 
Spain, 410. 

Barton, T. P., charge d'affaires, di- 
rected by Jackson to inquire pur- 
pose of France in 1835, 407 ; re- 
called, 407. 

Bell, John, supports White against 
Van Buren, 441 ; denounced by 
democrats, 441. 

Benton, Jesse, his feud with Jackson, 

Benton, Thomas H., upholds Wilkin- 
son against Jackson, 35 ; secures 
reimbursement of Jackson's ex- 
penses in 1813, 36; his feud and 
brawl with Jackson, 36 ; reconciled 
with Jackson, 114; supports first 
Clay, then Jackson, 114 ; said by 
Adams to have been bought by 
offer of a foreign mission, 114 ; dis- 
credits bargain story against Clay, 
119 ; calls Adams's election a viola- 
tion of the "will of the people," 
125 ; upholds democracy against the 
Constitution, 125, 126; falsity of 
his position, 127 ; violates constitu- 
tional liberty, 128 ; becomes one of 
Jackson's managers, 135 ; misrepre- 
sents Panama congress struggle, 

137 ; fixed upon by kitchen cabinet 
as successor to Van Buren, 200 n. ; 
on method of securing Creek land 
treaty, 222; opposes Clay's land 
policy, 232 ; introduces bill to sell 
public lands cheaply, 233; offers 
resolution against recharter of 
Bank, 287; says Bank attacked 
Jackson, 297 ; describes programme 
of opponents of Bank, 301 ; furnishes 
Clayton with charges against Bank, 
301 ; in error in charging Bank with 
causing financial disturbances, 315, 
316 ; says Calhoun was afraid of 
Jackson in 1833, 338; approves of 
removal of deposits, 347 ; intro- 
duces resolutions to summon Biddle 
to bar of Senate, 363 ; gives notice 
of expunging resolution, 366 ; holds 
caucus to enforce expunging, 367; 
calls distress fictitious, 370; moves 
to investigate specie transactions of 
Bank, 374; his devotion to metallic 
currency, 388 ; wishes to receive 
only specie for public lands, 392. 

Berrien, John M., Attorney-General, 
182; represents Calhoun's followers, 
183; denounced by Jackson, 209; 
reverses Wirt's opinion against 
South Carolina seaman acts, 219; 
protests against tariff, deprecates 
disunion, 256. 

Beverly, Carter, spreads report of 
Jackson's accusation of a corrupt 
offer on Clay's part, 122; writes 
apologetic letter to Clay, 123. 

Bibb, George M., proposes reduction 
of price of public lands, 234; op- 
poses Jackson on Bank question, 

Biddle, Nicholas, elected president of 
Bank, 269 ; represents young ele- 
ment, 269 ; receives complaint of 
Woodbury against Mason, 272; 
writes confident letter explaining 
causes of Mason's appointment, 
272, 273; stirs animosity of Hill 
and Woodbury, 272 ; denies that 
politics influence Bank, 274; forces 
Eaton to revoke order removing 
pension agency from Bank, 274 ; 
calls assailants of Mason a limited 
clique, 275 ; denies responsibility to 



Secretary of Treasury, 275; reaf- 
firms non-partisanship, 276, 277 ; re- 
monstrates against removal of pen- 
sion funds from New York branch 
bank, 288; reluctant to allow re- 
charter question to enter into cam- 
paign of 1832, 298 ; wishes Webster 
to introduce memorial for recharter, 
300;. defends branch drafts against 
Cambreleng, 303 ; on charge of non- 
user, 304; admits favors of Bank to 
T. Biddle, 306; secures postpone- 
ment of payment of three per cent, 
stock, 309 ; combines two offices, 
310 ; his policy to escape difficulties 
caused by branch drafts, 312, 313 ; 
his arguments too plausible, 312, 
313; his theory of bank notes 
vicious, 313, 314; asserts too much, 
314 ; poses as protector of public, 
314, 315; at Washington directs 
congressional campaign, 318 ; offers 
to compromise with Jackson, 318 ; 
accused of corrupting Congress, 
319 ; repudiates Cadwallader's con- 
tract with Barings, 340; thinks 
Bank strong enough not to contract 
loans, 342 ; knows of re-drawing be- 
tween branches, 342; his attempts 
to retain a sum as compensation for 
losses incurred by refusal of France 
to pay indemnity, 345 ; his conduct 
held by Jackson to prove unsound- 
ness of Bank, 352 ; writes answer to 
Jackson's paper read to cabinet, 
355; his defence, 356; motion of 
Benton to summon before Senate, 
363 ; charged with creating distress, 
370, 371; defends branch drafts, 
374 ; on method of securing Penn- 
sylvania charter, 396 ; doubts as to 
his sincerity, 397 ; his foolish course 
after 1836, 399 ; arraigned for con- 
spiracy but escapes, 400; resigns 
presidency of Bank, 400; his last 
days and death, 400, 401. 

Biddle, Thomas, favors shown him by 
Bank, 305, 306. 

Binney, Horace, holds branch drafts 
legal, 270. 

Binns, John, refusal of Adams to 
help, 142, 143; describes interview 
with Adams, 143; effort of Eaton 

to bribe, 191; claims to have in- 
vented political conventions, 294 n. 

Blair, F. P., supports Clay, then 
Adams, in 1824, 120 n. ; brought by 
Kendall to edit a Jackson organ at 
Washington, 206; his political views, 
207; his ability as a partisan editor, 
207; his sympathy with Jackson, 
207; supported by official patron- 
age, 207, 208; his unprincipled 
guidance of Jackson, 323 ; makes 
the " Globe " the controlling power 
of the party, 325, 326; acts as Jack- 
son's mouthpiece, 326 ; urges re- 
moval of deposits, his motives, 347; 
tries to moderate Jackson's anger 
at Biddle, 352 ; tries to control elec- 
tions, 440 ; loans Jackson money, 

Blount, Governor William, on Jack- 
son's efficiency as District Attorney, 
11 ; as senator, expelled, 13, 14 ; 
letter of Jackson to, 39 n. 

Bonaparte, Napoleon, his career af- 
fects imagination of Burr, 24; ad- 
mired in the West, 30; distorted 
view current as to his policy, 30, 
31 ; his duplicity condoned by demo- 
crats, 31 ; dupes United States into 
war with England, 35; his pro- 
clamations imitated by Jackson, 46 ; 
compared with Jackson, 323, 324, 
349, 362. 

Brackenridge, Henry M., on Jackson's 
imprisonment of Callava, 87. 

Branch, John, Secretary of Navy, 182 ; 
one of Calhoun's followers, 183. 

Briscoe vs. Bank of Kentucky, 422-424. 

British West Indies, negotiations as 
to trade with, 214-216; abolition of 
slavery in, 410. 

Broglie, Due de, on evil effect of Jack- 
son's message on French compensa- 
tion, 403 ; prepares to fulfil spolia- 
tion claims, 405 ; offers to pay if 
United States will apologize, 407. 

Brooke, F., letter of Clay to, 120. 

Brown, Major-General Jacob, contro- 
versy of Jackson with, 85 ; his ca- 
reer in war of 1812, 85. 

Brown, Eev. Obadiah B., his corrupt 
mail contracts, 409; resigns, with 
an " Appeal to the American Peo- 



pie," 409 ; writes for Johnson a re- 
port on running mails on Sunday, 

Buchanan, James, named by Jackson 
as authority for bargain story, 123 ; 
exonerates Clay, 123 ; conducts Peck 
impeachment case, 220; his failure 
in impeachment desired by Jackson, 

Bucktails, in New York, disorganized 
by anti-masonic movement, 292. 

Burke, Edmund, his remark on Chat- 
ham applicable to Adams, 149. 

Burr, Aaron, acquainted with Jack- 
Bon, 21 ; contracts with Jackson for 
boats on Mississippi, 22 ; his project 
ill-defined, 24, 25 ; probably intends 
merely filibustering, not secession, 
25 ; tries to use Jackson, 25 ; his 
conduct arouses Jackson's suspi- 
cion, 25 ; overcomes Jackson's scru- 
ples, 26; later upheld by Jackson, 
26 ; suggests Jackson as presiden- 
tial candidate, 99 ; his influence 
denied by Jackson, 99 ; defeated in 
1801 by Jefferson through corrupt 
appointments, 134. 

Butler, Benjamin F., signs petition 
for a branch bank, 285 ; advises 
Jackson to side with Michigan in 
boundary controversy, 446. 

Butler, , missionary, condemned 

for violating Georgia laws concern- 
ing Cherokees, 226, 227. 

CABINET, its members not " Constitu- 
tional advisers" of President, 181 ; 
Jackson's theory of, 353, 354, 362, 

Cadwallader, General T., sent by 
Bank to Europe to negotiate for ex- 
tension of a loan, 339 ; makes an 
arrangement with the Barings, 340. 

Calhoun, John C., appointed Secre- 
tary of War, 64 ; yields to Jackson 
in controversy as to authority, 64 ; 
sends orders to Jackson in Seminole 
affair, 70 ; annoyed at his insubor- 
dination, wishes him censured, 80 ; 
writes to Jackson an approving let- 
ter, 80; tries to prevent House 
from attacking him, 82 ; popular in 
South, the "young men's candi- 

date" in 1824, 104; Adams's esti- 
mate of, 104, 105; friendly with 
Adams, 105 ; his services in War 
Department, 105 ; rival of Crawford, 
105; accused in Rip Rap contract 
case, 106 ; his popularity in Penn- 
sylvania yields to Jackson's, 112 ; 
his followers expected by Jackson 
to join in a coalition, 112 ; said by 
Niles to have opposed Jackson as a 
"Bank candidate," 114; suggests 
a newspaper organ, 134 ; favors 
broad construction of federal pow- 
ers, 139 ; appoints committees hos- 
tile to Adams and Clay, 140 ; refuses 
to interfere to preserve order, 141 ; 
takes part in newspaper controversy, 
141 ; reflected Vice-President, hopes 
to succeed Jackson after one term, 
181 ; confirms nomination of Ken- 
dall by casting vote, 191 ; struggles 
with Van Buren for patronage, 193 ; 
damaged in Jackson's estimation by 
his wife's refusal to recognize Mrs. 
Eaton, 196; his loyalty doubted by 
Jackson, 196 ; his enemies poison 
Jackson's mind against him, 196 ; 
suspected by Lewis of having op- 
posed Jackson in Seminole affair, 

197 ; efforts of Crawford to turn 
Jackson's mind against, 198 ; said 
to have favored Adams at first, 

198 ; efforts of Crawford to prevent 
Georgia election from supporting, 
198; his proposal to censure Jack- 
son reported by Crawford to For- 
syth, 199 ; refuses to be drawn out 
on the subject by Henry Lee, 199 ; 
his loyalty thoroughly doubted by 
kitchen cabinet, 200; doubted by 
Jackson in letter to Overton, 201 ; 
his toast at nullification banquet, 
203; his advocacy of nullification 
drives Jackson to other side, 203 ; 
directly betrayed by Crawford, 204; 
asked by Jackson for explanation 
of perfidy, 204, 205 ; sees himself 
ruined, 205 ; his reply condemning 
Crawford, 205 ; letter of Jackson to, 
declaring breach, 205; publishes a 
pamphlet on the Seminole affair, 
209 ; his friends turned out of cabi- 
net, 209 ; rejects Van Buren' s nomi- 



nation by casting vote, 210 ; defeats 
woollen tariff by casting vote, 239 ; 
loses support in Pennsylvania and 
New York, 239 ; holds Van Buren 
responsible for tariff of 1828, 251 ; 
his political error in opposing tariff 
on nullification ground, 256, 257; 
Jackson's opinion of his course, 259 ; 
considered as possible candidate for 
President by anti-masons, 295 ; re- 
signs vice-presidency and enters 
Senate, 331 ; becomes absorbed in 
political mysticism, 331 ; his intense 
earnestness, 331, 332 ; denies that 
South Carolina is hostile to Union, 
332 ; offers resolutions on nature of 
Constitution, 333, 334 ; said to have 
been driven by fear of Jackson into 
an agreement with Clay, 338 ; later 
claims to have won victory by com- 
promise tariff, 339 ; joins whigs in 
Bank struggle, 365; proposes to 
amend Constitution so as to allow 
distribution of surplus, 381, 386 ; 
suspected by Jackson of plan to 
defeat Van Buren's nomination in 
1844, 459. 

California, the real object of Mexican 

. war, 413, 420. 

Call, General Richard K., censured by 
Jackson for insulting Mrs. Eaton, 

Caliava, Spanish ex-governor of Flo- 
rida, refuses to deliver papers to 
Jackson, sent to calaboose, 87 ; goes 
to Washington to protest, 88. 

Cambreleng, C., visits Crawford, 198 ; 
criticises branch bank drafts, Bid- 
die's ineffective reply, 303. 

Campbell, George W., letters of Jack- 
son to, 26, 27. 

Campbell, Rev. J. N., called before 
cabinet by Jackson for lefaming 
Mrs. Eaton, 195; chalk- uged by 
Eaton, 211. 

Canning, George, admits that Eng- 
land was coerced into opening West 
India trade, 216. 

Cass, Lewis, Secretary of War, 212 ; 
revokes order transferring pension 
funds from New York branch bank, 
288 ; opposes removal of deposits, 

Catron, John, tells Webster of desire 
in West to free Texas, 418. 

Cherokees, land bought from, by Jack- 
son, 60; their land claimed by 
Georgia, 223 ; their number, charac- 
ter, and civilization, 223; laws of 
Georgia claiming jurisdiction over, 
224-226 ; their removal provided for 
by Congress, 225; appeal to Su- 
preme Court, 225, 226; abandoned 
by Jackson, 226, 227 ; finally sell 
their lands and remove to Indian 
Territory, 229. 

Chevalier, Michael, compares debates 
of 1834 to those of French Revolu- 
tion, 364 ; on Jackson's reasons for 
defying France, 404. 

Cheves, Langdon, favors secession in 
1831, 261 ; his successful presi- 
dency of Bank, 269 ; thinks many 
branches disadvantageous, 307. 

Chickasaws, their situation in Missis- 
sippi, 223. 

Choctaws, their lands in Mississippi, 
223 ; cede their lands in 1830, 228 ; 
terms of their removal to Indian 
Territory, 229. 

Civil service, appointments to, Jack- 
son's early ideas upon, 62, 63 ; four- 
years' term introduced by Craw- 
ford, 107 ; Adams's administration 
of, 141-143, 146; its degradation 
under Jackson, 187-192, 409, 453, 

Claiborne, General W. C. C., serves 
in Creek war, 38; wishes martial 
law abolished, 54 ; describes Amos 
Kendall, 185. 

Clark, Judge, declares Kentucky re- 
plevin law unconstitutional, 162; 
attempt made to remove him, 163. 

Clay, Henry, leads new generation of 
republicans, 34 ; opposes Monroe's 
administration out of pique at fail- 
ure to receive State Department, 81 ; 
attacks Jackson's Florida career, 
81 ; possibly regards Jackson as a 
presidential rival, 82 ; alleged plan 
to nominate for Vice-President in 
1820, 92; his reputation and posi- 
tion as presidential candidate in 
1824, 108; his political principles, 
108 ; his gambling habits, 108, 109 ; 



reconciled with Jackson, 114; elec 
toral and popular vote for, 115 
his influence in the House of Repre- 
sentatives, 115; suspected of cor 
rupt motives for supporting Adams 
117 ; accepts State Department in 
spite of charges, 117 ; question o: 
propriety of his conduct, 117, 118 
Jackson's rage against, 119 ; charge 
of corruption invalid, 119: Clay's 
reasons for not favoring Jackson 
120; demands an investigation of 
Kremer's charges, 121 ; bitterly de- 
nounced by Jackson, 121 ; replies, 
121 ; his nomination meets oppo- 
sition in Senate, 122; calls upon 
Jackson for proof of Carter Be 
erly's story, 123 ; exonerated by 
Buchanan, 123 ; calls upon Jackson 
to retract, 123 ; continues to be ac- 
cused by Jackson, 123; later re- 
grets having accepted office, 123; 
not on friendly terms with Adams 
before 1824, 124 ; his friends urge 
Adams to appoint him to office, 124, 
125 ; tells Adams of intention to 
support him, 124 ; abused by Ran- 
dolph, 131 ; his duel with Randolph, 
131 ; his championship of South 
American republics, 135 ; urges 
Adams not to allow officials openly 
to oppose him, 141, 142 ; wishes 
McLean removed, 142 ; wishes Ad- 
ams to refute charges of defalca- 
tion, 143; Kendall's quarrel with, 
183, 184 ; suspected by Jackson of 
instigating attack on Mrs. Eaton, 
196 ; reconciled with Crawford, 198 ; 
rendered unpopular in West by pub- 
lic land policy, 232 ; his scheme re- 
jected in 1832 by Congress, 234; 
announces views on tariff in 1831, 
262; wishes to stop paying debt, 
263 ; defies the South, 263 ; expected 
by anti-masons to withdraw in favor 
of Wirt, 295 ; his position on ma- 
sonry, 295 ; uses Bank recharter as 
issue in campaign of 1832, 297 ; his 
dictatorial behavior, 298; vote for, 
in 1832, 320, 321 ; introduces com- 
promise tariff, 335 ; forced into 
untenable position by protected 
manufacturers, 338 ; agrees with 

Calhoun on compromise, 338 ; his 
later controversy with Calhoun as 
to which won, 339 ; denounced by 
protectionists for treachery, 339 ; 
moves a call for paper read to cabi- 
net, 362; introduces resolutions of 
censure on Taney and Jackson, 363 ; 
his land bill vetoed by Jackson, 
380 ; again fails to pass it, 381, 38G ; 
refuses to run against Van Buren, 
439 ; carries Tennessee, to Jack- 
sou's disgust, 460. 
Clayton, John M., offers resolutions 

on Constitution, 333. 
Clayton, Judge, announces intention 
to enforce State laws against Chero- 
kees, 225 ; his speech in sentencing 
two missionaries, 227; denounces 
tariff but opposes disunion, 256; 
moves for an investigation of Bank, 

Clinton, De Witt, a presidential can- 
didate, 102 ; supports Jackson 
against Crawford, 111 ; removed 
from office by Albany Regency, 
111 ; his place as Jackson leader in 
New York taken by Van Buren, 
130; his followers urged by Lewis 
to support Jackson, 147 ; nominated 
for presidency in 1812 by a conven- 
tion, 294. 

Cobb, Thomas W., denounces tariff, 
but disclaims disunion sentiment, 

obden, Richard, shocked at social 
condition of United States, 430. 
Cochrane, Admiral, ordered to ravage 
United States coasts, 49. 
ohens vs. Virginia, 169. 
Coinage, regulation of, 389-392. 
Coleman, Dr. L. H., letter of Jack- 
son to, on tariff, 95. 
onnecticut, anti-masonry in, 293 ; 
opposes nullification, 335. 
Constitution, its conflict with Ben- 
ton's demos krateo theory, 125- 
128 ; amendments to, proposed by 
democrats, 137 ; development of, by 
Supreme Court, under Marshall, 166- 
171, 174, 175 ; its relation to inter- 
nal improvements, 235 ; as affected 
by Jackson's theory of presidency, 
324, 325; its relation to nullifica- 



tion, 333, 334; in relation to Jack- 
son's theory of presidency, 349, 353, 
354, 3G3; interpretation of, by Su- 
preme Court after Marshall, 422- 

Cooke, John, major-general of Ten- 
nessee militia, 37 ; quarrels with 
Jackson, 38. 

Coppinger, , papers seized from, 

by Jackson's orders, 89. 

Craig vs. Missouri, 175. 

Crawford, W. H., revises Jackson's 
treaty with Creeks, 60 ; disliked by 
Jackson, 60; transferred to Treasury 
Department, 64 ; thought by Jack- 
son to have been his enemy in cabi- 
nt, 81 ; instigates House commit- 
tee to act against Jackson, 82 ; his 
friends lead in attacking Jackson, 
82 ; his enmity to Calhoun, 105 ; 
the " regular " candidate, 106 ; his 
career and character, 106, 107 ; his 
controversy with Edwards, 106; in- 
troduces four-years' term act, 107 ; 
said to have quarrelled with Mon- 
roe, 107 ; his friends nominate Van 
Buren for vice-presidency, 107 ; phy- 
sically disabled in 1824, 108; dis- 
liked by all other candidates, 108 ; 
nominated by a caucus of his 
friends, 110 ; his candidacy man- 
aged by Van Buren, 110, 111 ; up- 
held by " regular " democratic 
convention in Pennsylvania, 113 ; 
electoral and popular vote for, 115; 
vote of House for, 116 ; Clay's 
reasons for not supporting, 120 ; 
visits Capitol before the election, 
120 n. ; his political career ended, 
128 ; recovers health and becomes 
circuit judge, 128 ; his candidacy 
ruined by ill-health, 130 ; the only 
States'-rights candidate, 139 ; re- 
fuses Adams's offer of Treasury 
Department, 141 ; his hatred of 
Calhoun, 197 ; visited by Van 
Buren, 198; writes letter accusing 
Calhoun of enmity to Jackson, 198 ; 
plan to nominate for vice-presi- 
dency, 198 ; tries to persuade Geor- 
gia electors not to vote for Cal- 
houn, 198; reconciled with Clay, 
198; tells Forsyth that Calhoun 

proposed to censure Jackson in 
1818, 199; tells Jackson of Cal- 
houn's attitude, 204; says Jack- 
son's Rhea letter converted him, 
204 ; complained of, by Calhoun, 
205; opposes nullification and se- 
cession, 256 ; refers to Gallatin as 
authority for power to transfer 
drafts to banks, 359. 

Creeks, instigated to war by Tecum- 
seh, 37 ; massacre garrison of Fort 
Mims, 37 ; character of war with, 
38 ; defeated by Jackson, 41 ; sig- 
nificance of war with, 41, 42 ; Jack- 
son's treaty with, modified by Craw- 
ford, 60 ; refugees from, in Flor- 
ida, 65; attacked at Fowltown by 
Gaines, 68, 69 ; their lands in Geor- 
gia, 221 ; refuse to sell land, 221 ; 
their chiefs sell land by treaty 
of Indian Spring, 221 ; repudiate 
treaty, 222 ; protected by Adams, 
222 ; make a new treaty ceding 
land, 222 ; their numbers and char- 
acter, 223, 224 ; forced to move west 
of Mississippi, 2-29. 

Crittenden, J. J., on Calhoun's fears 
in 1833, 338. 

Curtis, George Ticknor, on Calhoun's 
fears in 1833, 338. 

DALLAS, A. J., asks Jackson to ex- 
plain his difficulties with civil au- 
thorities at New Orleans, 58. 

Dallas, George M., withdraws Cal- 
houn's name from presidential can- 
didacy in Pennsylvania, 112 ; pre- 
sents memorial of Bank for re- 
charter, 300. 

Dartmouth College vs. Woodward, 

Davis, Warren R., his funeral, 432. 

Dearborn, H. A. 8., on effect of hemp 
duties in Boston, 263. 

Delaware, votes for Adams in 1828, 
148 ; opposes nullification, 335. 

Democratic party, begins as opposi- 
tion to Adams, its elements, 130; 
its leaders, 131 ; organized by Van 
Buren, 131-133 ; its managers, 135 ; 
begins opposition in 1825, 136; its 
factious opposition to Panama mis- 
sion, 137 ; denounces Monroe doc- 



trine, 137 ; asserts regard for 
States' rights, 139 ; aided by Cal- 
houn, 140, 141 ; members of, not 
turned out of office by Adams, 142, 
143, 146 ; attacks administration for 
extravagance, 144 ; causes for its 
success under Jackson, 17&-179 ; 
celebrates his inauguration, 179; 
split in, between Calhoun and Jack- 
son, 201-206, 209 ; incongruous ele- 
ments of, 232 ; torn by tariff ques- 
tion, 250, 251 ; obliged by Jackson 
to oppose Bank, 285 ; its organiza- 
tion and principles in 1832, 296, 299 ; 
its national convention of 1832, 317 ; 
forced by Jackson into support of 
Van Buren, 318 ; denounces Senate, 
364 ; influenced by loco-focoa, 438 ; 
its full organization in 1836, 439, 
440 ; its control over country, 440 ; 
holds convention in 1835, 440, 442 ; 
division in, between followers of 
White and Jackson, 441 ; nominates 
Van Buren, 442; elects its candi- 
dates, 448, 449 ; Van Buren loses 
control of, 451, 458; controlled by 
South, 458. 

Deposits, removal of, see Bank ; 
plan debated in cabinet, 345-347 ; 
authors of, 347, 349 ; refusal of 
Duane to carry out, 350, 351, 353 ; 
preparation for, by Kendall, 351, 
352 ; carried out by Taney, 354 ; 
discussion of, 355 ; Taney's reasons, 

Desha, Governor Joseph, denounces 
all banks, 171 ; defends relief sys- 
tem and State sovereignty, 172 ; 
vetoes repeal- of law establishing 
the new Court of Appeals, 173. 

Dick, John, District Attorney, secures 
habeas corpus for Hall against Jack- 
son, 56 ; arrested and released, 56. 

Dickens, Asbury, on Michigan consti- 
tutional convention, 446. 

Dickinson, Charles, his quarrel and 
duel with Jackson, 21 ; wounds 
Jackson somewhat seriously and is 
himself killed, 21. 

Dinsmore, Silas, refuses to allow pas- 
sage of negroes through Indian 
country, 27 ; his removal and ruin 
caused by Jackson, 27 ; attempts in 

vain a reconciliation with Jackson, 

Diplomatic history, treaty of 1795 
with Spain, 22 ; purchase of Louisi- 
ana, 23 ; settlement with Spain and 
England after Jackson's invasion of 
Florida, 78, 80; Van Buren's in- 
structions to McLane in 1829, 210 ; 
question of trade with British West 
Indies, 214-216 ; mission of McLane 
to England, 215 ; mission of Rives 
to France, 217, 404 ; question of 
French spoliation claims, 217, 218, 
402-408 ; Jackson's belligerent mes- 
sage, 403, 404 ; refusal of France 
to pay, 405 ; Livingston's return, 
406 ; controversy between Jackson 
and Broglie, 407 ; diplomatic rela- 
tions broken off, 407 ; deadlock 
broken by England's mediation, 
408 ; final explanations, 408 ; nego- 
tiations with Mexico concerning 
Texas, 415 ; treaties with Mexico, 
416 ; dispute with Mexico over 
Gaines's invasion, 419 ; claims made 
against Mexico, 421 ; settlement by 
negotiation, 421. 

Donelson, John, early settler of Ten- 
nessee, 11. 

Donelson, Mrs. John, Jackson boards 
with, 11. 

Donelson, Rachel, marries Robards, 

11 ; accused by him of adultery 
with Jackson, 11, 12 ; marries Jack- 
son under scandalous circumstances, 

12 ; Jackson's subsequent devotion 
to, 13 ; slandered by Dickinson, 21 ; 
slandered during campaign of 1828, 
179 ; her death, 179. 

Donelson, Mrs., wife of Jackson's 
nephew, banished from White House 
for not recognizing Mrs. Eaton, 194. 

Drayton, William, his appointment 
urged by Jackson upon Monroe, in 
letters written by Lewis, 60, 61 ; 
not acquainted with Jackson, 61 ; a 
South Carolina federalist, 61 ; leads 
Union party, 212 ; offered War De- 
partment by Jackson, 212. 

Duane, William J., appointed Secre- 
tary of Treasury by Jackson, 345 ; 
his character, 346 ; objects to secret 
influence of kitchen cabinet, 347, 



348 ; describes its control over Jack- 
son, 348; urged by Whitney to re- 
move deposits, 349 ; refuses, 350 ; 
unmoved by Jackson's arguments, 
350, 351 ; refuses to yield responsi- 
bility to Jackson, 354; refuses to 
resign and is dismissed, 354 ; pub- 
lishes correspondence and attacks 
removal policy, 354, 355 ; abused by 
party press, 355. 

Duncan, Joseph, on gold and silver 
ratio, 390. 

Duvall, Gabriel, resigns from Su- 
preme Court, 423. 

EATON, JOHN H., his share in start- 
ing corruption story in 1825, 118 ; 
his methods as member of Jack- 
son's " literary bureau," 133, 135 ; 
Secretary of War, writes life of 
Jackson, 182 ; shares influence of 
kitchen cabinet, 187 ; offers Binns 
public printing if he will support 
Jackson, 191 ; marries Mrs. Timber- 
lake under questionable circum- 
stances, by Jackson's advice, 193, 
194 ; attack upon his wife suspected 
by Jackson to be a plot to drive 
him from cabinet, 196 ; talks with 
Lewis about Calhoun's attitude 
toward Jackson in 1818, 199; re- 
signs from cabinet, 209 ; infuriated 
at scandal concerning his wife, 211 ; 
.challenges Campbell and Ingham, 
211 ; complained of by Ingham, 
211 ; plan of Jackson to make him 
senator, 212 ; appointed governor 
of Florida and minister to Spain, 
212 ; quarrels with Jackson and be- 
comes whig, 212; his death, 212; 
removes New Hampshire pension 
agency from Mason's bank to Hill's, 
274 ; revokes order, 274 ; orders 
pension funds removed from New 
York branch bank, 287 ; at demo- 
cratic convention forced by Lewis 
to vote for Van Buren, 317. 

Edwards, Ninian, accuses Crawford of 
corruption, 106 ; says he was pro- 
mised support from Monroe, Jack- 
son, Calhoun, and Adams, 107 n. 

Election, of 1801, Jefferson charged 
with corruption in, 134 n. ; of 1816, 

92, 93 ; of 1824, 95-128 ; steps 
in nomination of Jackson, 95-100 ; 
the candidates, 100-108; relations 
of candidates to one another, 108; 
regular caucus desired by Crawford 
men, 109, 110 ; congressional caucus 
nominates Crawford, 110, 111 ; elec- 
toral struggles in various States, 
111-113 ; attempts at coalitions, 
112, 114, 116 ; electoral and popu- 
lar vote, 115 ; intrigues in House 
of Representatives, 116 ; choice 
of Adams, 116 ; the corrupt bar- 
gain story, 117-125 ; the demos 
krateo principle discussed, 125- 
128 ; its result changes current idea 
of presidential office, 129 ; of 1828, 
early plans for, 136 ; campaign 
slanders in, 144-146; electoral and 
popular votes, 148 ; of 1832, prepa- 
ration for, 294-299, 316-320; vote 
in, 320, 321 ; of 1836, 439-449 ; of 
1844, 459, 460. 

Ellis, Powhatan, his arrogant con- 
duct as charge d'affaires in Mexico, 

Ellmaker, Amos, nominated for vice- 
presidency by anti-masons at Balti- 
more in 1831, 294, 321. 

Ellsworth, W. W., on Bank investi- 
gating committee, 368. 

Ely, Rev. , called before cabinet 

by Jackson for defaming Mrs. 
Eaton, 195. 

Embargo, its folly and tyrannous 
character, 32. 

England, its policy toward United 
States, 31 ; repeals Orders in Coun- 
cil, 34 ; its successes in war of 1812, 
49 ; hopes to gain territory, 49 ; 
action of its officers in Florida, 
65, 66 ; suspected by United States 
of stirring up Indians in Florida, 
72; excludes United States from 
West India trade, 214; yields to 
retaliatory acts, 215, 216; begins 
tariff reform, 236 ; exports woollens 
to United States, 236 ; mediates be- 
tween France and United States, 
408 ; abolishes slavery in West In- 
dies, 410. 

Erving, George W., claims to have 
begun negotiations for annexation 



of Texas in 1819, 415 ; his claim 

denied by Adams, 459. 
Everett, A. H., writes address for 

protectionist convention, 261. 
Everett, Edward, letter of Madison 

to, on nullification, 254 ; on Bank 

investigating committee, 368. 

FANNIN, , murdered by Mexicans, 


Federalists, oppose admission of Ten- 
nessee, 13 ; their exclusion from of- 
fice deprecated by Jackson, 62, 63 ; 
said first to have favored Jackson 
for presidency, 99; convention of, 
in Pennsylvania, nominates Jackson, 
112 ; their hatred of Adams, 125 n. ; 
join democratic party against Ad- 
ams, 130. 

Financial history, breakdown of finan- 
ces during war of 1812, 48, 49; 
crisis of 1819, 93, 94 ; demand for 
cheap money in 1819, 94 ; conduct of 
Treasury by Crawford during panic 
of 1819, 106; inflation period in 
Southwest, 155-166, 171-174; "re- 
lief " movement in Kentucky and 
Tennessee, 157-175 ; events leading 
to charter of second Bank, 265, 266 ; 
history of second Bank, before 1829, 
266-272; Jackson's attack on the 
Bank, 277-281, 285-288; tranquil- 
lity of conditions in 1829, 281; 
charges against the Bank, 302-310 ; 
their validity, 311-316 ; dealings of 
Bank with Barings in 1832, 339-341 ; 
critical situation in West caused by 
branch drafts, 342, 343 ; financial 
distress caused by removal of de- 
posits, 352, 355, 360, 369-371 ; choice 
of deposit banks, 356-359 ; scandals 
in placing drafts to protect pet 
banks, 359, 360; hard-money pro- 
gramme of Jackson, 371 , 372 ; sound- 
ness of currency in 1834, 372 ; be- 
ginning of banking mania, 372-374 ; 
beginning of speculation, 377; era 
of canals and internal improve- 
ments, 378, 379 ; stringency in 1835, 
379 ; increased rise of prices to end 
of 1836, 380 ; deposit of surplus 
revenue, 382, 383 ; its effect, 384- 
387 ; status of deposit banks, 385, 

386 ; advocacy of metallic currency 
by Jacksonians, 388, 389 ; regula- 
tion of coinage, 389-392 ; over-valu- 
ation of gold, 390; export of sil- 
ver, 392 ; specie circular issued, 
392 ; its effect on banks, 393, 394 ; 
veto of bill to repeal specie circur 
lar, 394; new charter of Bank, 
395, 398 ; its rash career and col- 
lapse, 400, 401; effect of Briscoe 
case upon country, 426, 427 ; the 
panic of 1837, 450. 

Florida, question of its boundaries 
raised by purchase of Louisiana, 
23 ; partly occupied by United States 
in 1810, 24 ; possibly the object of 
Burr's schemes, 24 ; used as base of 
operations by English, 42, 43 ; Jack- 
son cautioned against invading, 43 ; 
invaded by Jackson in 1814, 43, 44 ; 
arbitrary action of English in, 65 ; 
negro fort in, destroyed by Gaines, 
66 ; pirates in, expelled by United 
States, 67 ; fugitive slaves in, 67 ; 
desire of United States to buy, 67 ; 
Games' s invasion of, to attack 
Creeks, 68, 69 ; offer of Jackson to 
conquer, 69 ; Jackson's invasion of, 
71-76; capture of St. Marks, 71; 
defeat of Seminoles in, 73, 74; 
political effect of Jackson's career 
in, 77, 78 ; purchased by treaty of 
1819, 84 ; Jackson's career as gov- 
ernor of, 85-90; Jackson's powers 
over, 86 ; controversies over land 
grants in, 87, 88. 

Floyd, General John, serves in Creek 
war, 38. 

Floyd, John, of Virginia, electoral 
vote for, in 1832, 320. 

Foote, Samuel A., offers resolution 
on public lands, 233. 

Force bill, asked for by Jackson, 332 ; 
debate upon, 334 ; passed, 336, 337 ; 
nullified by South Carolina, 337, 

Forsyth, John, tells Hamilton, on 
Crawford's behalf, of Calhoun's pro- 
posal to censure Jackson in 1818, 
199 ; declines to receive Broglie's 
statement of French case in 1835, 
407 ; receives offer of mediation 
from England, 408. 



France, duplicity of its policy toward 
United States, 31 ; war with, pre- 
vented by Adams, 31 ; question of 
spoliation claims upon, 216-218; 
agrees to pay claims, 217 ; refuses 
to pay claims as agreed, 344, 402 ; 
complained of by Jackson, 402, 403 ; 
anger of, at Jackson's message, 403, 
404 ; recalls minister, 405 ; refuses 
to pay without " satisfactory expla- 
nations," 405, 406; proposal of 
Jackson to exclude its ships, 407, 
408 ; accepts mediation of England, 
408 ; pays indemnity, 408. 

Franklin, State of, an outgrowth of 
" squatterism," 9. 

Fromentin, Eligius, issues habeas cor- 
pus for Callava, 88 ; summoned by 
Jackson to show cause, 88 ; his 
interview with Jackson, 88; not 
upheld by cabinet, 90. 

Frontiersmen, characteristics of, 7-9 ; 
their litigiousness, 8; their quar- 
relsomeness, 9 ; adopt squatterism 
as government, 10 ; live upon credit, 
18, 19 ; duelling code, 19, 20 ; their 
inefficiency and insubordination as 
troops, 38, 39. 

GAINES, GENERAL E. P., destroys "Ne- 
gro Fort," 66 ; complains to Indians 
of white men killed, 68 ; sends force 
to attack Fowltown, 68; accused 
by Mitchell of beginning Seminole 
war, 68 ; his account of the affair, 
68, 69 ; ordered by Jackson to seize 
St. Augustine, 80 ; ordered by Ad- 
ams to protect Creek lands, 222 ; 
ordered by Jackson to enter Texas, 
419 ; calls for militia, 419 ; recalled, 

Gallatin, Albert, describes uncouth- 
ness of Jackson's appearance in 
1794, 16 ; his career as financier, 
48; goes to Russia as peace com- 
missioner, 48 ; not forgiven by de- 
mocrats for abandoning finances, 
48 ; his action justly criticised, 
48, 49 ; warns of English prepara- 
tions to crush United States, 49 ; 
nominated for Vice-President, 110 ; 
still unpopular for having aban- 
doned the Treasury in 1812, 110; 

on English opinion of Jackson, 215 ; 
writes address for free-trade con- 
vention, 261 ; wrongly referred to as 
author of plan of transferring large 
drafts to banks, 3GO. 

Gardner, James B., his nomination 
rejected by Senate, 191. 

Georgia, nominates Van Buren for 
Vice-President, 107; urges United 
States to buy Indian lands, 220, 221 ; 
begins to dispose of Creek lands, 
222 ; yields to Adams's prohibition, 
222 ; dissatisfied with second Creek 
treaty, 222; demands that United 
States extinguish Cherokee title, 
223 ; Adams unpopular in, because 
of his attitude toward Indians, 224; 
passes law seizing Cherokee 'lands, 
224 ; refuses to obey Supreme Court 
in Tassel case, 225 ; asks Jackson 
to remove troops, 226 ; arrests and 
convicts Worcester, 227 ; refuses 
to obey Supreme Court, 227 ; later 
pardons Worcester and others, 228 ; 
declares tariff and internal improve- 
ments unconstitutional, threatens 
secession, 255, 256 ; kept from join- 
ing South Carolina by Crawford, 
256; threatens nullification, 257; 
opposes tariff and nullification, 335. 

Gibbons vs. Ogden, 168. 

Giles, William B., controversy with 
Adams over changing party in 1807, 

Gilmer, Governor George R., ordered 
by Georgia Legislature to disregard 
summons of Supreme Court, 226; 
denounces tariff, without favoring 
secession, 256. 

"Globe," its position as mouthpiece 
of Jackson, 207 ; its political power, 
325, 326. 

Gouge, William M., denounces banks, 
269 ; on fallacy of Biddle's posing as 
guardian of country, 315. 

Gouverneur, Samuel, letter of Ken- 
dall to, on exclusion of abolition 
matter from mails, 411. 

Granger, Francis, candidate of anti- 
masons in 183G, 439 ; nominated for 
vice-presidency, 444 ; vote for, 449. 

Green, Duff, edits "Telegraph" as 
Jackson's organ, 134, 135 ; in the 



kitchen cabinet, 181 ; his character 
and ability, 185 ; loyal to Calhoun, 
185 ; protected from competition by 
appointment of Kendall through 
Calhoun's casting vote, 191, 192; 
sides with Calhouii against Jack- 
son, 200 ; abandoned by office-hold- 
ers for Blair's " Globe," 207. 

Green vs. Biddle, 167. 

Grundy, Felix, leader in Tennessee 
bank measures, 158 ; offers resolu- 
tions on nullification, 333. 

HALL, JUDGE DOMINICK A., issues writ 
of habeas corpus for Louaillier, 55 ; 
arrested by Jackson, 55 ; accused 
by Jackson of inciting to mutiny, 
56 ; released, 56 ; fines Jackson 
11000 for contempt of court, 56, 57 ; 
called a tyrant by Jackson, 57. 

Hamilton, James, suggests "nullifi- 
cation," 251 ; held by Jackson to be 
misled by Calhoun, 259 ; presides 
over nullification convention, 327 ; 
willing to bring on a conflict, 337. 

Hamilton, James A., tries to reconcile 
Crawford with Jackson, 198; told 
by Forsyth of Calhoun's proposal 
to censure Jackson in 1818, 199; 
shows letter to Lewis, 199. 

Hammond, Jabez D., surprised at 
Van Buren's alarm over States' 
rights, 139. 

Harding, General, remark of Jackson 
to, on his temper, 21 . 

Harper, Robert G., in his description 
of election of 1801, accuses Jeffer- 
son of bribery, 134. 

Harrison, William H., nominated for 
presidency in 1836, 444 ; his char- 
acter, 445; his platform in 1836, 
447, 448. 

Harvard College, makes Jackson Doc- 
tor of Laws, 350. 

Hawkins vs. Birney's Lessee, 168. 

Hayne, Robert Y., his argument bet- 
ter than Webster's on all but con- 
stitutional grounds, 257 ; answers 
nullification proclamation, 331; will- 
ing to bring on a conflict, 337. 

Henderson, William, dissuades Jeffer- 
son from appointing Jackson to of- 
fice, 18. 

Hill, Isaac, in the kitchen cabinet, 
181 ; his career and character, 186 ; 
favors party proscription, 186 ; his 
nomination rejected by Senate, 191 ; 
elected to Senate with Jackson's 
aid, 192 ; reasons for his election, 
192, 193 ; his profane toast in honor 
of democracy, 203, 204; business 
and political rival of Mason, 272- 

f 274 ; asks for removal of Mason, 
274 ; turns Jackson against Bank, 
279 ; uses influence after election 
with greater freedom, 323 ; nomi- 
nated for governor of New Hamp- 
shire, 441. 

Hottinguer, , takes up draft of 

Bank on France, 344. 

House of Representatives, refuses to 
censure Jackson for execution of 
Arbuthnot and Ambrister, 80 ; ex- 
onerates Calhoun in Rip Rap affair, 
106 ; exonerates Crawford from Ed- 
wards' s charges, 106, 107 ; in elec- 
tion of 1824, 115-121 ; led by Clay, 
115, 116 ; investigates " corrupt bar- 
gain " of Clay and Adams, 121 ; ac- 
cused by Benton of violating will of 
people, 125, 128 ; impeaches Judge 
Peck, 220 ; debates public land pol- 
icy, 233 ; debates tariff in 1827, 241 ; 
takes testimony on tariff, 243 ; 
passes tariff of 1828, 250 ; defeats 
revision in 1830, 258 ; debates tariff 
in 1832, 262, 263 ; passes tariff of 

4 1832, 263, 264 ; rejects resolutions 
against Bank, 285, 286 ; passes re- 
charter of Bank, 319 ; debates tariff 
in 1833, 335 ; adopts compromise 
tariff, 337; passes force bill, 337; 
resolves that Bank is safe, 343, 344 ; 
supports removal of deposits, 368 ; 
reports of committees to, on Bank, 
368 ; passes bill to repeal specie cir- 
cular, 394; votes to sustain Jack- 
son in controversy with France, 405 ; 
struggle in, over contested election 
case, 446. 

Houston, , member of Jackson's 

" literary bureau," 133. 

Houston, Samuel, gets connivance of 
Jackson in plot to free Texas, 416 ; 
wins battle of San Jacinto, April 21, 
1836, 417. 



Hunt, Memucan, proposes annexation, 

Huskisson, William, his tariff policy 
in England, 236. 

Huyghens, , Dutch minister, 

threatened with dismissal by Jack- 
son, when his wife cut Mrs. Eaton, 

ILLINOIS, claims right to public land 
within its boundaries, 232, 233; 
.nominates White for President, 444- 

Indian Territory, planned by Porter, 
224; established by Congress, 225, 

Indiana, claims public lands within 
its boundaries, 233 ; opposes nullifi- 
cation, 335. 

Ingham, S. D., Jackson's Secretary of 
Treasury, 182; one of Calhoun's 
friends, 183 ; challenged by Eaton, 
declines to fight, 211 ; complains to 
Jackson, 211; complained to, of 
Mason, by Woodbury, 271 ; turns 
over complaint to Biddle, 272 ; Bid- 
die's reply to, 272, 273 ; doubts Bid- 
die's non-partisanship, 274 ; threat- 
ens to remove deposits if Biddle 
uses Bank for political purposes, 
276, 277 ; evidently wishes to use 
Bank as a political engine, 277 ; later 
asserts he was turned against Bank 
by Kendall, 278 ; report on cur- 
rency, 389. 

Internal improvements, opposition of 
Jackson to, in his first administra- 
tion, 234-236 ; demand for, in West, 
235, 378. 

International law, in Ambrister and 
Arbuthnot case, 77-79, 83. 

Isaacs, , one of Jackson's " liter- 
ary bureau," 133. 

JACKSON, ANDREW, father of Jackson, 

emigrates to North Carolina from 

Ireland, 1 ; his death, 2. 
Jackson, Mrs. Andrew^ mother of 

Jackson, emigrates to America, 1 ; 

aided by relatives after death of 

husband, 2 ; her death, 3. 
Jackson, Andrew, ancestry, 1 ; birth, 

2 ; childhood and education, 2 ; 

wounded by a British officer, 2, 3 ; 

learns to hate England, 3 ; after try- 
ing saddler's trade, studies law, 3 ; 
youthful fondness for sport, 3 ; rea- 
sons for his legal studies, 5; does 
not succeed in law, 5 ; admitted to 
bar hi Tennessee, 6 ; his duties aa 
public prosecutor, 9, 10 ; appointed 
by Washington, 11 n. ; his energy, 
11 ; accused of adultery by Robards, 
11, 12 ; questionable circumstances 
of his marriage, 12 ; his devotion to 
his wife's reputation, 13 ; member 
of Tennessee constitutional conven- 
tion, 13. 

Member of Congress. His early 
services in Congress, 13, 14 ; Jeffer- 
sonian in his politics, 14; votes 
against address to Washington at 
end of administration, 14; votes 
against federalist measures, 15 ; se- 
cures payment of claim of Tennes- 
see, 15 ; seems not to have enjoyed 
political life, 15 ; his appearance 
and conduct described as uncouth 
by Gallatin and Jefferson, 16 ; later 
in life, of distinguished bearing, 16. 

Tennessee Politician. Serves as 
Judge of Superior Courts, 16 ; quar- 
rels with Sevier, 16 ; elected major- 
general over Sevier, 17 ; gains popu- 
larity by his courage, 17 ; his illit- 
eracy, 17 ; trustee of Nashville 
Academy, 17 ; candidate for gov- 
ernorship of Louisiana, 18 ; returns 
to business and store-keeping, 18 ; 
financial embarrassments, 19 ; be- 
comes a confirmed duellist, 20 ; his 
quarrelsomeness, 20 ; duels with 
Avery and others, 20, 21 ; kills Dick- 
inson, 21 ; contracts to furnish Burr 
wTlh boats, 22 ; mystified as to 
Burr's plans, 25 ; eventually turns 
against him, 25, 26 ; then, won over 
by Burr, speaks against Jefferson, 
26 ; influenced by his personal dis- 
like of Wilkinson, 26 ; resents inter- 
ference of Dinsmore with his illicit 
negro trade, 27 ; secures Dinsmore's 
removal and ruin, 27 ; later refuses 
to be reconciled, 27 ; his character- 
istics in 1812, 28, 29; his intense 
personal feeling in every matter, 



Military Career. Offers services 
at outbreak of war, 35 ; organizes 
forces in Louisiana, 35 ; offers to 
seize Florida, 35 ; quarrels with 
Wilkinson, 35 ; ordered to disband 
men, 35 ; transports them on his 
own responsibility, 36 ; his feud 
and fight with the Beutons, 36; 
appointed major-general to serve 
against Creeks, 37 ; quarrels with 
his colleagues, 38 ; quarrels with sol- 
diers over terms of enlistment, 39 ; 
shows able leadership, 39 ; his tire- 
less energy against enemies, 39, 40 : 
gains popularity, 40 ; orders Wood 
shot for insubordination, 40 ; his 
act justified, 40, 41 ; defeats Creeks, 
41 ; appointed major - general in 
federal army, 42 ; establishes head- 
quarters at Mobile, 42 ; asks permis- 
sion to attack Pensacola, 43 ; his 
arrogant tone toward Secretary of 
War, 43 ; repulses English, 43 ; 
storms Pensacola, 44 ; prepares de- 
fence of New Orleans, 44, 45; his 
energy and success, 45 ; denounces 
English for seeking alliance with 
pirates, then praises latter for join- 
ing Americans, 45, 46 ; his bom- 
bastic proclamations, 46 ; his good 
fortune in battle of New Orleans, 
46 ; accuses Kentucky troops of 
cowardice, 46, 47 ; gains all the 
credit of the victory, 50 ; his enor- 
mous popularity, 50 ; orders more 
executions for mutiny, 52 ; later 
tries to evade responsibility, 52, 53 ; 
maintains vigorous defence until 
end of war, 53; continues to rule 
arbitrarily by martial law, 53, 54 ; 
his contempt for French inhabitants, 
54 ; refuses to abolish martial law, 
54, 55 ; orders French out of city, 
54 ; arrests Louaillier for attacking 
him in newspapers, 55; arrests 
Hall for issuing habeas corpus to 
Louaillier, 55 ; accuses Hall of 
"forgery," 56; disbands militia, 
56; arrests United States District 
Attorney and State Judge for issu- 
ing habeas corpus for Hall, 56 ; dis- 
approves of acquittal of Louaillier 
by court-martial, 56 ; retains him hi 

prison, 56 ; refuses to defend him- 
self when charged with contempt of 
court, 57 ; fined $1000, 57 ; his fine 
later refunded by Congress at Ty- 
ler's suggestion, 57 ; accuses Hall of 
tyranny and usurpation, 57 ; causes 
needless trouble by his obstinate 
pugnacity, 58 ; called upon by Dal- 
las to explain, 59; later dealings 
_ with War Department, 59. 

Career in Florida. Favors Mon- 
roe against Crawford in 1816, CO; 
angry with Crawford for modifying 
terms of his treaty with Creeks, 60 ; 
resumes negotiations and gains pop- 
ularity, 60 ; urges appointment oi 
Drayton as Secretary of War, 60, 
61 ; important letters written for 
him by Lewis, 61 ; these letters 
subsequently published in his in- 
terest, 62 ; urges Monroe not to 
proscribe federalists, 63; declares 
he would have hanged leaders of 
Hartford convention, 63 ; reply of 
Monroe to, 63 ; orders subordinates 
to obey no order not sent through 
him, 63 ; his point conceded by Cal- 
houn, 64 ; calls Scott to account for 
criticising his action, 64 ; challenges 
Scott to a duel, 64 ; ordered to com- 
mand in Georgia, 69 ; offers to seize 
Florida, 69 ; considers himself au- 
thorized to do so, 70 ; alleges a let- 
ter from Rhea, 70 ; raises troops in 
Tennessee on his own responsibility, 
70 ; advances to Florida frontier, 
71 ; threatens Spanish commander 
with hostilities, 71 ; captures St. 
Mark's, 71 ; purposes to pursue In- 
dians until he should catch them, 
71 ; assumes that Spanish aid and 
English instigate Indians, 71, 72 ; 
seizes Arbuthnot, 72 ; orders Indian 
chiefs hanged, 73 ; fails to capture 
Seminole chief owing to Arbuthnot's 
warning, 73 ; captures Ambrister, 

74 ; orders both prisoners executed, 
74, 75 ; captures Pensacola, 75 ; 
quarrels with Governor of Georgia, 

75 ; acts throughout on prejudices 
and assumptions, 75, 76 ; success of 
his campaign, 76 ; embarrasses Mon- 
roe by his action, 77 ; interprets in 



ternational law to suit himself, 77, 
78; upheld by popular approval, 
79 ; motion to censure rejected by 
House of Representatives, 80 ; Cal- 
houn wishes him censured, 80 ; all 
of cabinet except Adams prepared 
to disavow him, 80 ; defended by 
Adams, 80; congratulated by Cal- 
boun, 81 ; suspects Crawford of be- 
ing his enemy in cabinet, 81 ; cor- 
respondence with Monroe, 81 ; at- 
tacked by Clay, 81 ; and by Craw- 
ford's friends, 82; vindicated by 
Adams, 82, 83; on friendly terms 
with Adams, 82 ; proposal of Adams 
to make him Vice-President, 82 ; 
condemned by Senate report, 83 ; 
visits the East, excites popular in- 
terest, 83, 84 ; consulted by Adams 
regarding Louisiana boundary, 84 ; 
willing to abandon Texas claim, 84 ; 
later denies this consultation, 85 ; 
appointed Governor of Florida, 85 ; 
takes leave of army, 85 ; criticises 
Brown in general orders, 85, 86 ; 
becomes a privileged character, 86 ; 
his anomalous situation in Florida, 
86 ; orders arrest of Spanish ex- 
Governor on suspicion of concealing 
land grants, 87 ; quarrels with judge 
for issuing writ of habeas corpus 
for Callava, 88; orders friends of 
Callava out of Florida, 88 ; consid- 
ers himself to be acting with caution 
and prudence, 89 ; disgusted with 
situation, resigns, 89 ; dangers of 
absolute power in his hands, 89; 
vindicated by cabinet, 90 ; retains 
popularity, 90; declines mission to 
Mexico, 90 ; Jefferson's opinion of 
his diplomatic ability, 91. 

United States Senator. Elected to 
succeed Williams, 95; pushed for- 
ward by Lewis and others, 95 ; his 
cautious letter on the tariff, 95 ; his 
own opinion favorable to protec- 
tion, 96 ; votes for internal im- 
provements, 96 ; becomes candi- 
date for presidency, 96 ; his popular 
strength realized by Lewis, 97 ; 
methods of influencing him by Lewis, 
98; his candidacy suggested by Burr, 
99 ; denies that his candidacy origi- 

nated with federalists, 99 ; his 
strength early recognized by Adams, 
99; at first rejects idea of candi- 
dacy, 100 ; progress of campaign 
for, 99, 100 ; his only successes, so 
far, military, 100 ; his personal up- 
rightness and purity, 101, 102 ; re- 
ceives one vote in republican cau- 
cus, 110 ; nominated by a federalist 
convention in Pennsylvania, 112 ; 
makes an agreement with Calhoun, 
112, 113 ; nominated by Pennsylva- 
nia republicans, 113 ; considered 
unfit by " Albany Argus," 113 ; his 
election dreaded by Jefferson, 114 ; 
popular with ladies on account of 
his manners, 114 ; reconciled with 
Scott, Clay, and Benton, 114 ; vote 
for, in election, 115 ; his popularity 
in Pennsylvania, 115 ; defeated in 
election by House, 116 ; at first 
takes defeat calmly, 116, 117 ; 
adopts, at his friends' suggestion, 
the cry of a corrupt bargain against 
Clay, 118, 119 ; considers Clay a 
political gambler, 119; writes let- 
ters against Clay, 121 ; does not 
condemn Adams, 122 ; on returning 
home, spreads story, 122 ; becomes 
zealous to punish his enemies, 122 ; 
charges Clay with having tried to 
bargain with him, 122 ; called upon 
by Clay for proof, names Buchanan 
as authority, 123 ; refuses to re- 
tract, 123; late in life reiterates 
charge, 123 ; held to have been can- 
didate of " the people," 125-127. 
Leader of a New Party. Recog- 
nized as coming man, 129 ; his 
campaign managed by Van Bu- 
ren, 129, 130 ; his relations with 
Randolph, 131 ; " literary bureau " 
for, 133 ; nominated by Tennessee 
Legislature, 134 ; resigns senator- 
ship, 134 ; suggests amendment to 
Constitution to prevent presiden- 
tial corruption, 134 ; progress of 
campaign for, in Congress, 135, 136 ; 
slandered in campaign of 1828, 144, 
145 ; vote for, in election, 148, 149 ; 
believes his election a rebuke to 
a corrupt administration, 149 ; calls 
" relief " bills wicked, corrupt, un- 



constitutional, 157, 158 ; other let- 
ters denouncing inflation, 159 ; sup- 
ported by " relief " party in Ken- 
tucky, 174. 

President of the United States. 
Represents a new upheaval of de- 
mocracy, 176 ; his popularity due 
largely to his lack of social polish, 
178, 179 ; refuses to call on Adams, 
179 ; his inaugural, 180 ; not ham- 
pered by a political record, 180 ; ex- 
pected by Calhoun to serve one 
term only, 181 ; considers cabinet 
officers mere clerks, 181 ; instead 
of being led by them, relies on 
kitchen cabinet, 181 ; does not hold 
cabinet meetings, 181 ; his cabinet 
not strong, 182 ; appoints Lewis 
Second Auditor, 183 ; favors Ken- 
dall as an enemy of Clay, 184 ; 
aided by Lewis, Kendall, Hill, and 
Green, 187 ; considers civil service 
full of corruption, 188; his bitter- 
ness against a defaulter, 189 n. ; not 
the author of spoils system, 190 ; 
his appointments in one year dis- 
cussed, 190, 191 ; appoints members 
of Congress, 191 ; some of his 
worst nominations rejected, 191 ; his 
rage, 192 ; insists on election of Hill 
to Senate, which had rejected his 
nomination, 192; advises Eaton as 
to his marriage, 193 ; tries to force 
society to recognize Mrs. Eaton, 
194-197 ; makes it a political ques- 
tion, 194 ; declares unqualifiedly in 
favor of Mrs. Eaton, 195 ; tries to 
break down evidence of two clergy- 
men, 195; his heart won by Van 
Buren's courtesies, 196 ; alienated 
from Calhoun, 196; doubtful as to 
Calhoun's loyalty, 196 ; asserts at- 
tack on Mrs. Eaton to be an effort 
to drive Eaton out of cabinet, 196 ; 
ascribes it to Clay, 196 ; still thinks 
Calhoun his friend in Florida affair, 
197 ; efforts of Crawford to preju- 
dice against Calhoun, 198 ; attempt 
to reconcile with Crawford in 1828, 
199 ; gives dinner to Monroe, 190 ; 
learns of Crawford's statement as 
to Calhoun's enmity in 1819, 200 ; 
not allowed to see letter by his' 

managers, 200 ; plan of managers 
to reelect, and to have Van Buren 
his successor, 200, 201 ; fearing his 
death, his managers induce him to 
write a letter favoring Van Buren 
and disparaging Calhoun, 201 ; ad- 
dress for his renomiuation secured 
from Pennsylvania Legislature, 202 ; 
renominated by other Legislatures, 
202, 203.; his Union toast at Jeffer- 
son's birthday banquet, 203 ; a ques- 
tion how much his ill-will toward 
Calhoun influenced his attitude 
on nullification, 203 ; on receiving 
Crawford's account of Calhoun's 
action in Monroe's cabinet, demands 
an explanation, 204 ; accuses Cal- 
houn of perfidy, 204 ; bases his at- 
tack on the supposed Rhea letter, 
205; declares a breach with Cal- 
houn, 205 ; sends Calhouu's letter 
to Van Buren, 206 ; repudiates Duff 
Green, 206 ; secures Blair as mouth- 
piece, 207 ; compels departments 
to give Blair printing, 208; de- 
scribes varying receptions of Batons 
in Tennessee, 208 ; his quarrel 
with Calhoun becomes known, 209 ; 
resignation of his cabinet, 209 ; 
dismisses Calhoun's friends, 210 ; 
appoints Van Buren minister to 
England, 210 ; his rage at the Sen- 
ate's rejection of Van Buren, 211 ; 
his campaign for Mrs. Eaton fails, 

211 ; wishes White to resign from 
Senate in order to give Eaton his 
place, 212; quarrels with White, 

212 ; appoints Eaton governor of 
Florida and minister to Spain, 212 ; 
later quarrels with Eaton, 212 ; his 
new cabinet composed of firm fol- 
lowers, 212 ; sends McLane to urge 
England to allow West India trade, 
215; proclaims opening of West 
Indies, 215 ; question of his diplo- 
matic success, 215, 216 ; sends Rives 
to France to push spoliation claims, 
217 ; threatens war, 217 ; gains pop- 
ularity, 218 ; favors acquittal of 
Judge Peck when impeached by 
Buchanan, 220 ; his attitude toward 
Creeks and Cherokees, 224 ; refuses' 
to protect Indians against Georgia 



laws, 225 ; withdraws federal troops 
from Georgia, 226 ; .refuses to en- 
force Cherokoe treaties, 226; re- 
fuses to enforce Supreme Court de- 
cisions, 227 and n. ; declares him- 
self ready to submit his conduct to 
people, 227 ; has no settled pol- 
icy in regard to public lands, 233 ; 
his Maysville road veto, 234, 235 ; 
cor rage of his attitude, 235 ; vetoes 
other internal improvement bills, 
yet signs some, 235 ; recommends 
sale of all stock held by United 
States, 235 ; disappoints Southern- 
ers by his attitude toward nullifica- 
tion, 259 ; letter showing how he 
was influenced by hatred of Cal- 
houn, 259 ; in 1831 intimates inten- 
tion of using force against nullifica- 
tion, 200 ; denounced by Hayne, 
260 ; recommends reduction of tariff 
because of surplus, 263 ; said by 
Ingham to object to Bank at begin- 
ning of term, 278 ; doubtfulness of 
this assertion, 279 ; turned against 
Bank by Hill, Kendall, and Blair, 
279 ; hi first annual message ques- 
tions soundness and constitutution- 
ality of Bank, 281 ; effects of his 
statement, 282 ; novelty of his as- 
suming to speak for fellow-citizens, 
282 ; his words really meaningless, 
283; causes decline in Bank stock, 
284 ; his proposed substitute con- 
demned by House committee, 284 ; 
his party not opposed to Bank at 
this time, 285; renews suggestions 
in 1830 without success, 285; later 
denies having meant a government 
paper currency, 286, 287 ; refers to 
Bank question as closed in 1831, 
288; opposed as a mason by anti- 
masonic faction in New York, 292 ; 
in 1832 stands as leader of a new 
democratic party, 296 ; review of 
his policy to this point, 296, 297 ; 
attacked by Clay as danger to the 
Bank, 207 ; aroused by this into ac- 
tive hostility to Bank, 299 ; gains 
popularity by his boldness, 299 ; not 
damaged in Pennsylvania by his 
Bank action, 316 ; forces Van Bu- 
ren's nomination for Vice-Presi- 

dent, 317, 318 ; refuses to consider 
an offer from Biddle to compromise, 
318 ; vetoes Bank recharter, 319 ; 
his reasons, 319, 320 ; gains support 
of private and State banks, 320 ; 
reflected in 1832, 320, 321 ; consid- 
ers himself as vindicated in every 
respect by election, 322, 323; his 
increasing self-confidence, 323 ; 
managed with greater freedom by 
kitchen cabinet, 323, 324 ; his gov- 
ernment purely a personal one, 324, 
325; his theory degrades republi- 
can institutions, 325 ; his despotic 
use of the " Globe," 325, 326 ; or- 
ders Scott to prepare for violence 
at Charleston, 323 ; issues nullifi- 
cation proclamation, 328, 329; not 
responsible for either its form or its 
doctrine, 329 ; becomes for once a 
national hero, 329, 330 ; appears in- 
consistent to milliners, 330; his 
managers alarmed by its tone, 330 ; 
justifies protection by war argu- 
ment, 332 ; asks for power to en- 
force laws, 332 ; charged by South 
Carolina with tyranny, 337 ; said to 
have terrified Calhoun by threats 
of hanging, 338 ; his increasing ani- 
mosity toward Bank, 339 ; urges 
Congress to investigate, 341 ; ap- 
points Duane Secretary of Treasury, 
his motives, 345, 346 ; advised by 
Taney to remove deposits, 346 ; used 
by Kendall and Blair as tool, 347 ; 
inspired by them with idea of 
Bank's corrupting Congress, 348, 
349 ; abandons Jeffersonian ideas in 
order to " save the country," 349 ; 
his tour in New England, 350 ; his 
degree from Harvard, 350 ; bit- 
ter comments of Adams upon, 350 ; 
tries to persuade Duane to remove 
deposits, 350, 351 ; encouraged by 
Taney to persevere, 351 ; assaulted 
by Lieutenant Randolph, 351 n. ; 
gains conviction that Bank is finan- 
cially weak, 352 ; offers to Duane 
to take the responsibility, 353, 354 ; 
reads paper to cabinet, 354 ; dis- 
misses Dnane, 354 ; transfers Taney, 
354; attacked by Duane, 355; in 
message of 1833 attacks Bank again 


as a political engine, 360; charges 
Bank with manufacturing a panic, 
360; indignant at rejection of his 
nominations by Senate, 362 ; refuses 
call of Senate for paper read to 
cabinet, 362 ; avows himself respon- 
sible to the people, 363 ; complains 
that Bank still holds papers of pen- 
sion agency, 363 ; censured by Sen- 
ate, 364 ; protests against censure 
as unconstitutional, 364 ; resolu- 
tions against, expunged, 367 ; more 
gratified by this than by any other 
incident of his life, 367 ; receives 
" distress delegations " with rage, 
371 ; suggests a hard-money pro- 
gramme, 371, 372; in message of 
1834 urges further measures to pun- 
ish Bank, 374 ; in 1835 repeats 
charges that Bank is anti-demo- 
cratic, 375 ; proposes sale of public 
lands to new States and to actual 
settlers, 380; vetoes Clay's land 
bill, 381 ; signs bill to deposit sur- 
plus, 381 ; his objections to it, 382, 
383 ; did not veto because of com- 
ing election, 383 ; argues for reduc- 
tion of revenue, 384; orders issue 
of specie circular, 392 ; vetoes bill 
to annul specie circular, 394 ; sends 
his reasons to State Department, 
394 ; his course in Bank war 
summed up, 397 ; his charges 
against Bank unproved, 397 ; ques- 
tion whether his course was justi- 
fied by later history of the Bank, 
398; in his last message condemns 
Bank, 400 ; reports to Congress neg- 
lect of France to pay treaty claims, 
402; urged by Livingston to adopt 
a vigorous tone, 403 ; suggests pos- 
sible reprisals, 404 ; sustained in 
Congress by Adams, 405; in 1835 
declares he meant no menace, 407 ; 
directs Barton to ask intentions of 
France, 407 ; again recommends co- 
ercion, 407 ; proposes commercial 
non - intercourse, 407 ;. transmits 
France's conciliatory message to 
Congress, 408 ; appoints Kendall to 
succeed Barry as Postmaster-Gen- 
eral, 409; expected by the South 
to secure Texas, 415 ; probably con- 

nives at Houston's plan to revolu- 
tionize Texas, 416 ; offers to buy 
Texas, 416, 417 ; later says he was 
prevented by Adams from annexing 
Texas hi 1836, 418 ; orders General 
Gaines to enter Texas, 418, 419 ; 
wishes Gaines to repeat his own ex- 
ploits of 1818, 419; recommends 
delay in recognition of Texas, 419 ; 
submits report of agent on Texan 
boundary claims, 420 ; fosters swag- 
gering, filibustering spirit in army 
and navy, 422 ; appoints new jus- 
tices of Supreme Court, 424 ; his 
appointments alter course of con- 
stitutional development, 427 ; his 
influence upon violence and lawless- 
ness, 430 ; attempt of Lawrence to 
assassinate, 432 ; accuses Poindex- 
ter of instigating the attempt, 432 ; 
his charges frivolous, 433 ; accused 
of toryism by whigs, 439 ; consid- 
ered for a third term, 440 ; recom- 
mends a party convention, 440 ; un- 
able to make Tennessee support 
Van Buren, 441 ; denounces White 
as a traitor, 441 ; announcement by 
Van Buren of purpose to follow 
Jackson's course if elected, 442 ; 
attempt of whigs to rival by nomi- 
nation of Harrison, 445 ; favors 
Michigan in boundary controversy, 
446 ; consequences of his acts fall 
upon Van Buren, 450, 451 ; rejoices 
at inauguration of Van Buren as a 
personal triumph, 452. 
In Retirement. Returns to Ten- 
nessee, his popularity, 452 ; yet 
does not exercise direct influence 
at Washington, 453 ; aided in pecu 
niary troubles by Lewis and Blair, 
453; mortified at Swartwout's de- 
falcation, 454; wishes Lewis to re- 
sign his office in 1839, 454, 455; 
rejoices at Tyler's financial policy, 
456, 457 ; his keen interest in Texas 
annexation, 457 ; bitter remarks on 
Adams, 457, 458 ; his letter of 1843 
favoring Texas annexation, used 
against Van Buren, 458 ; repeats 
his disapproval of treaty of 1819, 
458 ; controversy with Adams on 
this point, 459 ; speculates on elec- 



tion of 1844, still hopes Van Buren 
will be nominated, 459 ; later sup- 
ports Polk, 460 ; mortified that 
Clay carries Tennessee, 460 ; death, 
summary of his career, 460 ; never 
forgives an enemy to the end, 460. 

Personal Qualities. General views, 
100, 460 ; ambition, 5, 100, 101, 112 ; 
arrogance, 53, 56, 64, 79, 85, 89, 101, 
323 ; chivalrousness, 193, 195, 208 ; 
courage, 10, 41 ; diplomatic ability, 
91, 215; fidelity, 13, 28, 179, 190, 
192, 317 ; illiteracy, 16, 17, 101 ; 
manners, 16, 20, 101, 114 ; military 
ability, 35, 39, 41, 44 ; morals, 101, 
102 ; passionateness, 16, 18, 21, 58, 
65, 87, 114 ; personal appearance, 
16 ; pride, 3, 28, 35, 64 ; persistency, 
10, 11, 39, 47, 56-58, 76, 98, 339 ; 
pugnacity, 13, 17, 18, 20, 27, 35, 36, 
38, 58, 64, 75, 91, 194, 299, 337 ; self- 
centred habit, 26, 43, 60, 72, 76, 81, 
122, 194, 322, 324, 432, 433 ; severity, 
40, 52, 54, 55, 75 ; susceptibility to 
advice, 98, 118, 201, 285, 324, 349 ; 
vigor, 28, 35, 39, 44-46, 50, 53 ; vin- 
dictiveness, 179, 189 n., 318, 339, 

Political Opinions. Ambrister and 
Arbuthnot case, 77 ; Bank, 281, 285, 
288, 299, 318-320, 339, 340, 350-354, 
360, 363, 374, 375, 400; cabinet, 
353, 354, 362 ; censure, resolutions 
of, 364 ; democracy, Jeffersonian, 
14, 176, 296 ; election of 1824, 117, 
119, 121-123 ; election of 1844, 459 ; 
England, 72 ; expunging resolution, 
367 ; federalists, 14, 15 ; Florida, 42, 
43, 69, 70, 204 ; French spoliation 
claims, 217, 402-408 ; Hartford con- 
vention, 63 ; Indians, 226 ; internal 
improvements, 234-236 ; judiciary, 
220, 227, 427 ; lands, public, 380 ; 
Michigan boundary, 447 ; money, 
286, 287, 371, 372, 392, 394, 456 ; 
nullification, 203, 259, 328, 332 ; 
office, appointments to, 63, 134, 188, 
191, 192; party conventions, 440; 
Presidency, 282, 322-325, 353, 362, 
363 ; relief system, 157-159 ; Swart- 
wout charges of corrupt bargaining, 
453, 454 ; surplus, distribution of, 
233, 381-381 ; tariff, 96, 263 ; Texas, 

416, 418-420, 457, 458 ; West India 
trade, 215. 

Jaudon, , agent of Bank in Eng- 
land, 399. 

Jefferson, Thomas, describes Jack- 
son's inability to control himself 
while in the Senate, 16 ; refuses to 
appoint Jackson governor of Louisi- 
ana, 18 ; his conduct toward Burr 
denounced by Jackson, 26 ; his in- 
definite foreign policy, 31 ; his com- 
mercial warfare criticised, 32, 33 ; 
his character womanish, 33 ; aban- 
dons attempt to control govern- 
ment after breakdown of his policy, 
33 ; on Jackson's diplomatic unfit- 
ness, 91 ; considers Jackson a dan- 
gerous man for President, 114 ; ac- 
cused by Harper of having bought 
election of 1801 by appointments, 
134 ; his use of term " nullifica- 
tion," 252 ; his responsibility for 
events of 1832, 255. 

Johnson, Richard M., votes not to 
nominate a caucus candidate in 
1820, 92; proposes to amend Con- 
stitution so as to give appellate ju- 
risdiction to Senate where a State 
is a party, 161 ; on Jackson's behalf, 
tries to persuade secretaries to 
force their wives to recognize Mrs. 
Eaton, 194 ; signs report of com- 
mittee against Bank without know- 
ing facts, 302 ; nominated for Vice- 
President, 442 ; refusal of Virginia 
to support, 442 ; his letter of ac- 
ceptance, 442 ; his career and char- 
acter, 443 ; vote for, in 1836, 448 ; 
elected Vice-President, 449. 

Johnson, W. C., president of young 
men's convention, 318. 

Johnson, William, member of Su- 
preme Court, his death, 423. 

Jones, William, originates plan of 
transferring drafts to deposit banks, 

KENDALL, AMOS, supports Clay, then 
Adams, in 1825, 120 ; in the kitchen 
cabinet, 181; his career and char- 
acter, 183 ; quarrels with Clay, 183, 
184 ; responsible for Jackson's worst 
errors, 184; appointed Fourth Au- 


ditor, 184; description by Harriet 
Martineau of his great and mysteri- 
ous influence, 184; his importance 
described by Claiborne, 185 ; not a 
spoilsman at the outset, 188 ; his 
nomination confirmed by Calhouu 
for personal reasons, 191, 192 ; ori- 
ginally a States' rights man, later 
Unionist, 203 ; brings Blair to edit 
an administration paper, 206 ; forces 
office-holders to subscribe to it, 207 ; 
gives questionable evidence as to 
political partisanship of Bank, 278, 
279 ; poisons Jackson's mind against 
Bank, 279 ; announces Jackson's in- 
tention of attacking Bank, 279, 280 ; 
suggests a paper currency, 280, 284 ; 
at Lewis's suggestion, arranges that 
New Hampshire Legislature pro- 
pose a national democratic conven- 
tion, 317 ; writes address for con- 
vention, 318 ; shows increased con- 
fidence in managing Jackson, 323 ; 
tries to persuade McLane to re- 
move deposits, 346 ; persuades Van 
Buren, 346, 347 ; the moving spirit 
in attack on Bank, his motives, 347; 
tries to persuade Duane, 350; asks 
local banks to be ready to receive 
deposits, 351 ; alleged by Rives to 
have advised Jackson to abandon 
project, 352 ; reports on banks to 
receive deposits, 356 ; refuses to or- 
ganize deposit system, 358 ; suc- 
ceeds Barry as Postmaster-General, 
409; reorganizes department, 409; 
his position on abolition matter in 
mails, 411 , 412 ; his appointment 
confirmed, 412. 

Kendall, Amos^-his " Life of Jackson " 
quoted, 2, 5, 10. 

Kentucky, favors Jackson after Clay 
in 1824, 115; "relief" movement 
in, 152-155, 160-166, 171-174; strug- 
gle in, between judiciary and Legis- 
lature, over land titles, 153 ; fails to 
remove judges, 153 ; sells land on 
credit, 153; repeals old-age pen- 
sions, 154 ; passes law against citing 
English law reports in court, 154 ; 
charters banks, 155 ; financial crisis 
in, 160 ; tries to tax United States 
Bank, 160; passes "relief" mea- 

sures and charters new State bank, 
161, 162 ; its replevin law declared 
unconstitutional, 162, 164; fails to 
remove judges, 163 ; ruins Bank of 
Kentucky, 163; struggle in, to re- 
move judges, 164 ; creates a new 
Court of Appeals to supersede old 
one, 164, 165 ; struggle between 
"Old" and "New" Courts, 165, 
172, 173 ; loses people, 165 ; angered 
by United States Supreme Court 
decisions, 167-169 ; message of Gov- 
ernor Desha against Bank and Su- 
preme Court, 171, 172 ; damaging 
effect of Bank of Commonwealth 
in, 173, 174; continues to be di- 
vided into relief and anti-relief par- 
ties, 174; its representatives in 
Congress lead attack on federal ju- 
diciary, 218, 219. 

Kentucky resolutions of 1798 and 1799, 
their relation to nullification, 252, 

Kitchen cabinet, its composition, 181, 
183-187 ; its control over Jackson, 
187 ; objected to by Duane, 347, 348. 

Kremer, George, takes responsibility 
for corruption story, 120, 121 ; de- 
clines to testify, 121 ; not the real 
author, 121. 

LACOCK, ABNER, presides over nations. 
republican convention, 298. 

Lands, public, plan for their seizure 
by States, 229 ; other plans for sale 
of, either to settlers, 229; or for 
internal improvements, 230 ; con- 
sidered a national asset, 230 ; their 
cheapness increases wages in East, 
230, 231 ; their use for revenue 
urged by protectionists, 231 ; pro- 
posals to hasten sale of, 233 ; their 
sale to States proposed, with distri- 
bution of proceeds, 234, 380 ; Jack- 
son's veto of Clay's land bill, 381 ; 
renewed attempt of Clay to distri- 
bute proceeds of, 381,386. 

Latour, A. L., on causes of English 
defeat at New Orleans, 46. 

Lawless, , punished by Judge Peck 

for contempt of court, 220 ; peti- 
tions Congress for redress, 220. 

Lawrence, Richard, attempts to shoot 



Jackson, 432 ; thought by Jackson 
to be a tool of Poindexter, 432, 433 ; 
acquitted as insane, 433. 

Lee, Henry, sees value for Jackson of 
corrupt bargain story, 118 ; one of 
Jackson's managers, 135 ; disap- 
pointed at share of spoils, with- 
draws, with damaged character, 
from supporting administration, 187; 
his appointment rejected by Sen- 
ate, 191 ; tries to draw out Calhoun 
on Seminole affair of Jackson, 199 ; 
electoral vote for, in 1832, 321. 

Legal profession, its rise before the 
Revolution, 3-5 ; character of pre- 
paration for, 4, 5 ; the opening for 
ambitious young men, 5. 

Leigh, B. W., succeeds Rives in Sen- 
ate, 3G6 ; damages party standing 
by refusal to obey Virginia instruc- 
tions or resign, 366. 

Letcher, Robert P., urges Adams, if 
elected, to give Clay office, 124 ; ar- 
ranges meeting of Adams and Clay, 
124 ; wishes more than a majority 
of judges necessary to declare a 
State act void, 167 n. 

Lewis, William B., denies responsibil- 
ity of Jackson for military execu- 
tions in 1815, 52; writes letters 
signed by Jackson urging Monroe to 
appoint Dray ton, 60, 61 ; his mo- 
tives in inducing Jackson to write, 
61, 62 ; on reasons for electing 
Jackson to Senate, 95 ; the origina- 
tor of political theatrical effects, 
96, 97 ; description of his methods 
of starting spontaneous movements, 
97 ; his ability and shrewdness, 97, 
98; his devotion to Jackson, 98; 
how he managed Jackson, 98 ; uses 
Jackson's letters to Monroe to win 
federalists, 99 ; secures support in 
North Carolina, 100 ; realizes value 
of " corrupt bargain " cry, 118 ; 
publishes Kremer's letter, 121 ; one 
of Jackson's managers, 135; urges 
Clinton men to support Jackson, 
147, 148 ; says Jackson will serve 
only one term, 147 ; in the " kitchen 
cabinet," 181 ; accepts, with reluc- 
tance, position as Second Auditor, 
183; supposed to have initiated 

spoils system, 188; draws from 
Jackson a letter defending Mrs. 
Eaton, 195 ; his account of Jack- 
son's relations with Calhoun, 197- 
200; suspects Calhoun of having 
opposed Jackson in 1818, 197 ; sends 
Hamilton to Crawford, 198 ; learns, 
through Forsyth, of Calhoun's real 
attitude, 197 ; tells Jackson of the 
Forsyth letter, 199, 200 ; sent to get 
letter, prefers a direct statement 
from Crawford, 200; decides that 
Jackson must take a second term, 
and be succeeded by Van Buren, 200 ; 
wishes Jackson to name Van Buren 
as successor, 201 ; induces Pennsyl- 
vania Legislature to issue a " spon- 
taneous call " for Jackson to accept 
a second term, 202 ; on Van Buren's 
refusal to take part in Calhoun 
quarrel, 206; makes office-holders 
subscribe to Blair's paper, 207 ; 
complained of by Ingham, 211 ; pro- 
poses to Kendall a convention to 
nominate Van Buren, 317 ; forces 
Eaton to support Van Buren by 
threatening him with Jackson's dis- 
pleasure, 317 ; shows increased con- 
fidence in managing Jackson after 
election, 323; tries to dispel Vir- 
ginian alarm at nullification procla- 
mation, 330 ; does not know who 
proposed removal of deposits, 346 ; 
and opposes removal, 347 ; tries in 
vain to dissuade Jackson, 348, 349 ; 
although an office-holder, interferes 
in elections, 440 ; aids Jackson in 
pecuniary difficulties, 453 ; incurs 
Jackson's displeasure. by refusing to 
resign office, 454, 455 ; his estimate 
of public opinion, 455 ; removed by 
Polk, 456. 

Linn, L. F., letter of Jackson to, 57. 

Livingston, Edward, refuses to vote 
for complimentary address at end 
of Washington's administration, 14 ; 
his justification, 14 n. ; aids Jack- 
son in defence of New Orleans, 44 ; 
brings Jackson news of peace, 54 ; 
suggests presidency for Jackson, 99 ; 
sees value of " corrupt bargain " 
cry, 118 ; one of Jackson's man- 
agers, 135 ; at first without influ- 



ence on Jackson's administration, 
187; Secretary of State, 212; let- 
ter of Madison to, on nullification, 
253 ; writes nullification proclama- 
tion, 328 ; urges Jackson to refer 
vigorously to French delay in pay- 
ment of claims, 403; his letters 
anger French, 404; denies that 
Jackson's message is a threat, 406 ; 
moderates tone of Jackson's mes- 
sage, 407. 

Loco-focos, their origin in New York, 
433 ; revolt against Tammany, 433 ; 
their Jeffersonian principles, 434, 
435 ; defeat Tammany leaders, 435, 
436 ; declare their independence of 
party, 437 ; reunite with Tammany 
democrats, 437, 438; influence of 
their principles, 438. 

Long, James, proclaims independence 
of Texas, 413. 

Louailler, Louis, aids Jackson in pre- 
paring defence of New Orleans, 45 ; 
criticises Jackson for not abolishing 
martial law and is arrested, 55 ; his 
surrender on habeas corpus refused 
by Jackson, 55 ; tried by court- 
martial and acquitted, 56 ; kept in 
prison by Jackson, 56. 

Louis Philippe, gains throne of 
France, 217 ; tries to settle compen- 
sation question, 402 ; orders pay- 
ment, 408. 

Louisiana, ceded to France by Spain, 
22; ceded to United States, 23; 
question of its boundaries, 23 ; 
western boundary of, settled in 
Florida treaty, 84, 85. 

Lowndes, William, nominated for 
President by South Carolina, 102 ; 
his report on currency, 389. 


McDuffie, George, presents report 
against tariff, his argument, 247 ; 
introduces bill to reduce duties, 
258; chairman of Committee on 
Ways and Means, 262 ; reports bill 
reducing duties, 263; reports in 
favor of Bank, 284 ; presents memo- 
rial of Bank for recharter, 300 ; crit- 
icises proposed new charter, 301 ; 
answers Benton's charges against 

Bank, 301 ; fears that Jackson will 
remove deposits, 344. 

McGregor, General Sir McGregor, his 
career in Florida, 67. 

Mclntosh, Creek chief, makes treaty 
ceding lands, 221 ; killed by Creeks, 

McLane, Louis, Van Buren's instruc- 
tions to, 210, 215; Secretary of 
Treasury, 212 ; proposes to sell 
public lands to the States, 233; 
reports a tariff bill in 1832, 264; 
argues in favor of Bank, 288 ; his 
report possibly meant to cover 
Jackson's retreat, 288 ; transferred 
to State Department, 345 ; opposes 
removal of deposits, 346. 

McLean, John, his removal urged by 
Clay on ground of his treachery to 
Adams, 142 ; refusal of Adams to 
dismiss, 143 ; continues to work for 
Jackson, 146 ; refuses to remove 
Bache, although a defaulter, 146; 
replaces him at last by a Jackson 
man, 146; removed from postmas- 
ter-generalship by Jackson for re- 
fusing to proscribe, 182 ; appointed 
to Supreme Bench, 182 ; declines 
anti-masonic nomination, 295 ; in 
case of Briscoe vs. Bank of Ken- 
tucky, 423, 424 ; nominated for Pre- 
sident by Ohio, 444. 

McNairy, John, appointed judge in 
Tennessee, 6; quarrels with Jack- 
son, 21 ; on Jackson's freedom from 
vices, 101, 102. 

Macon, Nathaniel, receives one vote in 
presidential caucus of 1824, 110. 

Madison, James, orders occupation of 
West Florida, 24 ; inherits conse- 
quences of Jefferson's policy, 33 ; 
pushed into war by the West, 33, 
34 ; refuses armistice, on impress- 
ment issue, 34 ; his Virginia resolu- 
tions of 1798, 253 ; opposes milli- 
ners in 1830, 253, 254; vetoes a 
bank in 1815, 265. 

Mails, question of abolition literature 
in, 411, 412. 

Mallary, Rollin C., introduces bill to 
adjust tariff on wool and woollens, 
238, 239; his proposal to exclude 
imports, 242 ; introduces amend- 



ments on floor of House, 243 in- 
troduces bill to regulate appraisals, 

Mangum, W. P., on mistakes of nulli- 
fiers, 338; vote for, in 183G, 448. 

Marcy, William L., avows famous 
spoils doctrine, 211 ; signs petition 
for a branch bank, 285; alarmed 
at speculation in 1836, 380. 

Marshall, John, attitude of Jackson 
toward, 227 n. ; his death, 362 ; in 
case of Briscoe vs. Bank of Ken- 
tucky, 423 ; his place in history, 

Martin vs. Hunter's Lessee, 168. 

Martineau, Harriet, describes myste- 
rious influence of Kendall, 184 ; de- 
scribes fanat'cism of Calhoun, 331 ; 
shocked at crimes of violence in 
United States, 430 ; describes Jack- 
son's suspicious of plot to murder, 

Maryland, passes resolutions against 
congressional caucus, 109 ; its elec- 
toral vote in 1828, 148. 

Mason, Jeremiah, refusal of Adams to 
aid in his election, 141 ; appointed 
president of New Hampshire branch 
of Bank, 271 ; complained of on 
political grounds by Wood bury, 272; 
reasons for his appointment given 
by Biddle, 272, 273 ; a political en- 
emy of Woodbury and Hill, 273; 
attacked by Hill, 273 n. 

Massachusetts, early appraisal law in, 
for debtors, 152 ; anti-masonry in, 
293, 294 ; opposes nullification, and 
favors tariff, 335 ; nominates Web- 
ster for presidency, 444. 

Matthews, General George, ordered to 
sound people of East Florida as to 
annexation, 70. 

Mayo, Dr. Robert, his narrative of 
Texas intrigue, 416. 

Maysville road veto, 234. 

Metcalf, Thomas, elected governor of 
Kentucky by "anti-relief" men, 

Mexico, abolishes slavery, 413, 414; 
excepts Texas, 414; forbids immi- 
gration from United States, 415; 
revolution in, 416; war of Texan 
independence with, 417 ; entered by 

Gaines, 419; attempts of United 
States to pick a quarrel with, 421 ; 
agrees regarding claims, 421 ; fails 
to fulfil engagements, 421 ; cause of 
later war with, 422. 

Michigan, has boundary dispute with 
Ohio, 446; frames Constitution 
without consent of Congress, 446; 
obliged to accept boundary, 447 ; 
its vote in presidential election, 447. 

Mills, E. H., describes Jackson's per- 
sonal agreeableness, 101 ; describes 
Crawford, 107 ; describes Clay, 108. 

Mississippi, navigation of, claimed as 
a right in Tennessee Constitution, 
13 ; its connection with Burr's 
scheme, 22; secured by treaty of 
1795, 22 ; withdrawn by Spain, 23. 

Missouri, favors Jackson after Clay 
in 1824, 115 ; its vote in election of 
1824 controlled by Scott, 125 ; op- 
poses nullification, 335. 

Mitchell, Governor D. B., on cause of 
Seminole war, 67, 68 ; holds Gaines 
responsible, 68. 

Mobile, defence of, organized by Jack- 
son, 42, 43 ; repulses English, 43 ; 
captured later by English, 47. 

Monroe, James, told by Cochrane of 
intention to devastate American 
coasts, 49 ; favored by Jackson for 
presidency, 60 ; urged by Jackson 
to appoint Drayton to War Depart- 
ment, 60, 62 ; urged by Jackson not 
to proscribe federalists, 63 ; his an- 
swer to Jackson, 63 ; asked by Jack- 
son to signify through Rhea his de- 
sire for seizure of Florida, 69 ; does 
not see Jackson's letter, 69 ; timid- 
ity of his diplomacy, 77 ; disap- 
proves of Jackson's doings in Flor- 
ida, 80; countermands Jackson's 
order to seize St. Augustine, 80 ; 
correspondence with Jackson rela- 
tive to Spanish forts, 81 ; willing to 
abandon Texan claim, 84 ; asks Jef- 
ferson's advice as to giving Jack- 
son Russian mission, 91 ; receives 
every electoral vote but one, 92 ; 
given a dinner by Jackson, 199 ; 
said by Ringgold to be Jackson's 
only supporter hi 1818, 199 ; denies 
Crawford's account of cabinet pro- 



ceedings in 1818, 204; appoints 
commissioners to buy land from 
Creeks, 221 ; in 1816 names Sabine 
as western boundary of Louisiana, 
412; holds same position as Presi- 
dent, 412. 

Monroe doctrine, denounced by Ad- 
ams's opponents, 137. 

Morgan, William, writes exposure of 
free-masonry, 289; persecuted by 
masons, 289; disappears, supposed 
proof of his murder, 290. 

Muter, Judge , overrides Ken- 
tucky law in land-title decision, 153 ; 
denounced by Legislature, 153 ; re- 
verses decision, 153 ; retired in 1806, 
loses his pension, 154. 

NEW ENGLAND, opposes Jefferson's 
foreign policy, 32 ; ceases opposition 
after Peace of Ghent, 51 ; popular- 
ity of Calhoun in, 104 ; supports 
Adams in 1828, 148; turns from 
free trade to protection, 237, 244 ; 
Jackson's tour in, 350. 

New Hampshire, popularity of Cal- 
houn in, 105; part played in, by Hill, 
in building up democratic party, 
186, 187 ; bitterness of politics in, 
273, 274 ; at Lewis's suggestion, pro- 
poses national convention to nomi- 
nate a Vice-President, 317 ; urges 
reduction of tariff, 335. 

New Jersey, votes for Adams in 1828, 
148; opposes reduction of tariff, 

New Orleans, its importance in Mis- 
sissippi navigation controversy, 22, 
23; danger of an attack upon, in 
1812, 35 ; defences of, organized by 
Jackson, 44, 45 ; battle of, 46, 47 ; 
significance of victory, 47, 49, 50; 
continued under martial law by 
Jackson, 53-56. 

New York, popularity of Calhoun in, 
104; passes resolution in favor of 
caucus, 109; follows Virginia, 109; 
controlled by Albany Regency, 111; 
struggle in, over manner of choosing 
electors, 111 ; carried by Adams men 
against Regency, 111, 112 ; failure of 
Jackson to secure support in, 113 ; 
electoral vote of, 115 ; development 

of spoils politics in, 131-133 ; casts 
electoral vote in 1828 by districts, 
148 ; asks Jackson to accept second 
term, 202 ; instructs Van Buren to 
vote for tariff of 1828, 251 ; rise of 
anti-masons in, 290-293 ; disarrange- 
ment of parties in, 292 ; passes re- 
solutions against Bank, 316 ; op- 
poses nullification, 335 ; development 
of loco-focos in, 433-438. 

Nichols, Colonel, his acts toward In- 
dians disavowed by England, 72. 

Niles, Hezekiah, slow in publishing 
Jackson's controversy with Scott, 
65; assumes presence of British 
emissaries in Florida, 72, 79 ; praises 
Jackson as uniformly right, 79; on 
numbers of presidential candidates 
in 1824, 102 ; opposes caucus nomi- 
nations, 109; on Calhoun' s opinion 
of Jackson in 1822, 114 ; criticises 
Benton's " demos krateo " doctrine, 
125 ; on character of campaign of 
1828, 144 ; objects to titles, 177 ; his 
ignorance of England, 178 ; on need- 
lessness of quarrels over succession 
to Jackson, 201 ; hears rumor of 
quarrel between Jackson and Cal- 
houn, 209 ; scoffs at Jackson's West 
India trade arrangement, 216; 
preaches high tariff, his influence, 
238, 239; on Mallary's wool bill, 
240 ; on grain trade, 242 ; dissatis- 
fied with tariff of 1828, 245 ; sur- 
prised at Jackson's attack on Bank, 
280 ; on expectation of a Bank veto, 
319 ; on craze for banks, 373 ; and 
on speculation, 380 ; on origin of 
name whig, 439. 

North Carolina, its connection with 
State of Franklin, 9 ; " relief " laws 
in, 152 ; denounces tariff, 256, 257, 
335 ; does not favor nullification, 
257; denounces nullification, 261, 

Nullification, proposed in South Caro- 
lina in 1827, 251 ; its relation to 
Virginia and Kentucky resolutions, 
252-254 ; real responsibility of Jef- 
ferson for, 254, 255 ; difference be- 
tween Georgia and Carolina cases 
of, 260; carried out in 1832, 327, 
328 ; Jackson's proclamation against* 



Jackson's responsibility 
for, 330 ; debate on, in Senate, 333, 
334; denounced by State Legisla- 
tures, 335. 

Omo, favors Jackson as second choice 
in 1824, 115 ; anti-masonry in, 293 ; 
nominates McLean in 1836, 444; 
boundary controversy with Michi- 
gan, 446, 447. 

O'Neil, Peggy, her origin and career, 
193 ; marries Timberlake, 193 ; mar- 
ries Eaton under suspicious circum- 
stances, 193 ; ostracised by wives 
of cabinet officers, 194 ; attempts of 
Jackson to force her on society, 
194; her character defended by 
Jackson, 195 ; asks Jackson's pro- 
tection against General Call, 195; 
paid attentions by Van Buren, 196 ; 
accompanies Jackson to Tennessee, 
208 ; her varying receptions de- 
scribed by Jackson, 208 ; failure of 
Jackson to benefit by his efforts, 
211 ; her death, 212. 

Osborn vs. Bank of United States, 166. 

Overton, Judge John, letter of Jack- 
son to, on Calhoun and Van Buren, 

Owens, , murder case of, in Ala- 
bama, 228. 

PAGEOT, , French charge d'affaires, 

recalled, 407- 

Palmer, William A., defeated for vice- 
presidential nomination, 444. 

Panama mission, debate over, 137. 

Parton, James, his biography of Jack- 
son quoted, 2, 3, 17, 25, 27, 61, 87, 
95, 99, 197, 200, 207, 208, 212, 317, 
346, 452. 

Party management, its development 
by Lewis, 95-97 ; its theatrical char- 
acter, 97 ; use of catchwords, 118, 
136 ; its development in New York, 
132 ; its " literary " features, 133 ; 
partisan newspapers, 133, 134; 
linked with spoils system, 189, 190. 

Peck, Judge, punishes Lawless for 
alleged contempt of court, 220 ; im- 
peached by House, 220 ; acquitted 
by Senate, 220 ; Jackson's attitude 
in his case, 220. 

Pennsylvania, popularity of Calhoun 
in, 104 ; opposes a congressional 
caucus, 110 ; popular nomination of 
Jackson in, 112, 113 ; turns from 
Calhoun to Jackson, 112 ; its devo- 
tion to Jackson, 115 ; its vote in 
1828, 148; at Lewis's suggestion, 
Legislature asks Jackson to consent 
to reelection, 202 ; although a high- 
tariff State, supports Jackson, 232 ; 
its demands in tariff, 244; anti- 
masonry in, 293 ; Jackson's hold 
upon, unshaken, in 1832, 299, 316 ; 
opposes reduction of tariff, 335; 
grants Bank a charter, 396 ; con- 
ventions in, nominate Harrison, 444. 

Pensacola, occupied by English in 
1814, 42 ; stormed by Jackson, 44 ; 
again captured in 1818, 75. 

Pickering, Timothy, supports Jackson 
in 1828, out of dislike for Adams, 

Pinckney, Thomas, praises Jackson 
in Creek War, 41. 

Plumer, William, casts electoral vote 
for Adams in 1820, 92. 

Poindexter, George, accused by Jack- 
son of trying to murder him, 432 ; 
acquitted by Senate, 433. 

Poinsett, Joel R., fails to try to buy 
Texas, his reasons, 413 ; again fails 
under Van Buren, 415. 

Polk, James K., reports bill to sell 
Bank stock, 341 ; his report on sol- 
vency of Bank, 343 ; does not pro- 
pose action, 344 ; reports resolutions 
upholding Jackson and Taney, 368 ; 
introduces bill to forbid receipt of 
Bank notes, 375. 

Porter, Peter B., prepares plan for an 
Indian territory, 224. 

Presidency, Jackson's conception of, 
282, 322-325, 349, 353, 354, 362. 

" Prophet," in Tecumseh's war, 38 n. 

Protection, demand for, after war of 
1812, 93, 94 ; becomes a political 
question, 94; advocates of, oppose 
settling of new lands, 230-232 ; de- 
manded by wool manuf acturers,236- 
238 ; its doctrine according to Niles, 
238, 239; demand for, by conven- 
tion of wool-growers and manufac- 
turers, 240 ; argument for, as re- 



taliation against English corn laws, 
241, 242 ; difficulty of getting it 
before Supreme Court, 332, 333; 
saved by compromise tariff, 339. 

spondence with Jackson on Indian 
troubles, 75. 

Randolph, John, leads opposition in 
abusing Clay, 131; his duel with 
Clay, 131 ; his later career as minis- 
ter to Russia, 131 ; himself accused 
of corruption, 131 ; his behavior in 
Senate, 141 ; complained of by Ing- 
ham, 211 ; tries to rouse Virginia 
against the nullification proclama- 
tion, 330. 

Reid, Major John, begins "Life of 
Jackson," 182. 

Republican party, pushes Madison into 
war of 1812, 33; its incompetent 
management of war, 48, 49 ; saved 
by battle of New Orleans, 50. 

Rhea, J., a filibuster in Florida, 69 ; 
supposed by Jackson to have con- 
veyed Monroe's approval of his plan 
to invade Florida, 69, 70 n. 

Rhode Island, opposes reduction of 
tariff, 335. 

Rip Rap contract, connection of Cal- 
houn with, 106. 

Ritchie, , letter of Lewis to, on 

nullification proclamation, 330. 

Rives, W. C., minister to France, 
negotiates concerning spoliation 
claims, 217 ; refers to Jackson as 
authority for Tyler's plan of ex- 
chequer notes, 286, 287 ; on Ken- 
dall's willingness to abandon re- 
moval of deposits, 352 ; resigns 
from Senate, 365 ; reflected, 366 ; 
boasts of outwitting French minis- 
ter, 404; defeated for Vice-Presi- 
dent by Johnson, 442. 

Roane, Archibald, decides election of 
Jackson as major-general over Se- 
vier, 17. 

Robards, Lewis, accuses Jackson of 
adultery, 11 ; applies for and se- 
cures a divorce, 12. 

Rowan, Judge John, sustains right of 
State to tax United States Bank, 
160 ; in Congress, moves to oblige 

federal courts to follow procedure 
of States, 218. 

Rucker, , at democratic national 
convention, 441. 

Rush, Richard, in Arbuthnot case, 
83 ; appointed Secretary of Treasury 
by Adams, 141 ; candidate for Vice- 
President, 149 ; approves of branch 
drafts, 270. 

SANPORD, NATHAN, proposes a gold 
currency, 389. 

Santa Anna, gains control of Mexico. 

Sargent, Nathan, on factiousness of 
Adams's enemies, 137; on memorial 
of Bank for recharter, 300. 

Schulze, , republican candidate 

for Governor of Pennsylvania, 102. 

Scotch-Irish, emigrate to Carolina, 1. 

Scott, John, urges Adams to give 
Clay a place in administration, 125. 

Scott, Winfield, criticises Jackson's 
defiance of Secretary of War, 64; 
challenged to a duel by Jackson, 
refuses, 64; reconciled with Jack- 
son, 114 ; sent by Jackson to Charles- 
ton, 328. 

Sebastian, Judge William K., over- 
rides Kentucky law in land-title 
case, 153; denounced by Legisla- 
ture, 153. 

Secession, movement for, in South- 
west, 22 ; killed by annexation of 
Louisiana, 25; not planned by 
Burr, 26; right of, asserted by 
Georgia, 256; planned in South 
Carolina, 260, 261. 

Seminole war, 68-76 ; controversy 
over, between Jackson and Cal- 
houn, 199-206, 209. 

Senate of United States, committee 
of, condemns Jackson's career in 
Florida, 83 ; opposition in, to con- 
firmation of Clay as Secretary of 
State, 122 ; presided over by Cal- 
houn to Adams's disadvantage, 140, 
141 ; postpones Adams's nomina- 
tions, 190 ; reluctant to confirm 
many of Jackson's appointments, 
191, 192; election of Hill to, as 
a rebuke, 192, 193; rejects Van 
Buren's nomination, 210; 



Judge PecV on impeachment, 220 ; 
debate of Webster and Hayne in, 
233 ; passes bill to sell public lands, 
233; debates sale of lands, 234; 
rejects resolution against Bank, 287; 
passes Bank charter, 319 ; forces 
Jackson to sign or veto, 319 ; fails 
to pass bill over veto, 320; nullifi- 
cation debate in, 332-334; passes 
force bill, 336; passes compro- 
mise tariff, 337 ; refuses to reap- 
point government Bank directors, 
361, 362 ; rejects Taney for Secre- 
tary of Treasury and judge of Su- 
preme Court, 3G2; demands paper 
read in cabinet, 362 ; censures Jack- 
eon, 363, 364; refuses to receive 
Jackson's protest, 364 ; denounced 
by party press, 364; bitterness of 
debate in, 364, 365; rejects ex- 
punging resolutions, 366; finally 
passes expunging resolutions, 367 ; 
passes bill to repeal specie circu- 
lar, 394 ; on relations with France, 
405; declines to act, 405; recog- 
nizes independence of Texas, 421. 

Sergeant, John, nominated for vice- 
presidency, 248, 321. 

Sergeant, Thomas, a Jackson man, ap- 
pointed to office by McLean, 

Sevier, John , quarrels with Jack- 
son, 16; defeated by Jackson in 
contest for position of major-gen- 
eral, 17 ; elected governor, 17 ; his 
feud with Jackson, 17. 

Slade, William, defeated for vice- 
presidential nomination, 444. 

Slamm, , his career as "equal 

rights " leader, 437, 438. 

Smith, Samuel, reports in favor of 
Bank, 2S4. 

Smith, William, electoral vote of 
Georgia for, as Vice-President, 149 ; 
vote for, in 1836, 449. 

Society in America, its democratic 
character, 177, 178 ; its ignorance 
of foreign countries, 178 ; its vio- 
lence and turbulence under Jack- 
son, 428, 429 ; its factiousness, 430 ; 
its zealousness and extravagance, 
431 ; socialistic ideas in, 449, 450. 

South, joins with West in advoca- 

ting free lands, 232 ; opposes tariff, 
240, 244, 246, 255 ; effect of tariff 
upon, 248-250; its error in attack- 
ing tariff by nullification, 256, 257 ; 
defied by Clay, 263 ; considers Jack- 
son's nullification proclamation 
treachery, 330; considers compro- 
mise tariff a victory, 337 ; enraged 
at abolitionist literature in mails, 
411 ; wishes annexation of Texas, 
414, 415 ; expects Jackson to secure 
it, 415 ; its zeal for Texas in 1836, 
418 ; gains control of Democratic 
party, 458. 

South Carolina, nominates Lowndes 
for President in 1824, 102 ; opposes 
a congressional caucus, 109 ; its sea- 
man laws held unconstitutional, 
169; later held constitutional, 219 ; 
nullification movement in, 251-261 ; 
changes from a broad to strict-con- 
structionist view, 255 ; its error in 
opposing tariff by nullification, 256, 
257 ; its protest of 1828, 257 ; disap- 
pointed by Jackson's Union toast, 
259 ; fails to call a convention, 260 ; 
denounces Jackson's letter of 1831, 
260 ; votes for Floyd in 1832, 320 ; 
controlled by nullifiers, 327 ; calls 
convention to nullify tariff, 327 ; 
attempts to prevent appeals to 
federal courts, 327, 328; Union 
convention in, 328 ; proclamation 
of Jackson to, 328; defies Jack- 
son, 331, 337 ; postpones operation 
of nullification, 337 ; repeals ordi- 
nance of nullification, 337 ; nullifies 
force bill, 337, 338. 

Southwest, its attitude on Mississippi 
navigation, 22, 23 ; secession move- 
ment in, 22, 25 ; admires Napoleon, 
30 ; paper-money craze in, 151, 155 ; 
struggles in, between frontiersmen 
and constitutions, 151 ; financial 
crisis in, 156 ; its later economic 
prosperity, 176. 

Spain, grants Mississippi navigation 
in 1795, 22 ; cedes Louisiana to 
France, 22 ; withdraws right of de- 
posit, 23 ; its position as to Florida 
boundary, 23 ; refuses to pay Amer- 
ican claims, 23 ; cedes Florida, 23 ; 
neutral in war of 1812, 42 ; allows 



English to operate in Florida, 43, 
65 ; unable to govern Florida, 67. 

" Specie Circular," 392-394. 

Spencer, John C., reports Morgan 
case spoiled by political coloring, 

Spoils system, developed in New 
York, 131-133; introduced into 
federal government by Jackson, 
187-191 ; effect of, upon post-office, 
409, 410 ; in customs, 453, 454. 

Stanbaugh, Colonel, instructed by 
Lewis to propose a second term for 
Jackson, 202. 

Stevens, Thaddeus, supports Webster 
in 1836, 445. 

Stevenson, Andrew, elected Speaker, 
constitutes committees unfavorable 
to tariff, 241 ; presides over demo- 
cratic convention, 442. 

Story, Joseph, takes anti-masonic 
movement too seriously, 294 ; in 
case of Briscoe vs. Bank of Ken- 
tucky, 423 ; his dissenting opinion, 
424 ; his reasons for resigning, 427. 

Sturges vs. Crowninshield, 166. 

Supreme Court of the United States, 
its great constitutional decisions 
under Marshall, 166-169, 174, 175 ; 
their effect discussed, 169-171 ; de- 
nounced in Kentucky, 171, 172 ; 
attacks upon in Congress during 
Jackson's administration, 218, 219 ; 
difficulty of getting it to pass on pro- 
tection, 333 ; in case between Bank 
and Treasury in 1834, 345 ; com- 
position of, altered under Jackson, 
423, 424 ; its decision in Briscoe vs. 
Bank, 423, 424; its development 
to this point national, 424-426; 
its decision permits State wild- 
cat banking, 426, 427; degener- 
ates into a political machine, 427, 

Surplus, distribution of, favored by 
Jackson, 233 ; proposed by McLane 
and Clay, 234 ; bill for, passed by 
Congress, 381 ; objections of Jack- 
son to, probably overruled for polit- 
ical reasons, 382, 383 ; regulation 
for, 382, 383 ; its effect on debtor 
States, 383; benefits small States 
and new ones, 384 ; squandered in 

most States, 385 ; renewed schemes 
for, 386 ; payment of, 386, 387. 
Swartwout, Samuel, recognizes po- 
litical value of " corrupt bargain " 
story, 118 ; letter of Jackson to, on 
Clay, 121 ; one of Jackson's man- 
agers, 135 ; his embezzlement, 453 ; 
Jackson's comments on, 453, 454. 

TAMMANY SOCIETY, its quarrel with 
loco-focos, 433-436 ; reunites with 
loco-focos, 437, 438. 

Taney, Roger B., Attorney-General, 
212 ; favors removal of deposits, 
346 ; Jackson's principal adviser, 
346, 351 ; writes " Paper read to the 
cabinet," 354; appointed to Trea- 
sury Department, 354 ; sends plan 
for organization of deposit bank sys- 
tem, 357 ; wishes Kendall to organ- 
ize deposit system, 358 ; gives de- 
posit banks large drafts for protec- 
tion against United States Bank, 
359 ; refers to Crawford for a pre- 
cedent, 300 ; his reasons for removal 
of deposits, 360, 361 ; his appoint- 
ment to Treasury rejected, 362 ; 
succeeds Marshall as Chief Justice, 
362, 424. 

Tariff, of 1816, its causes, 93; attempt 
to raise, in 1820, 94 ; increased in 
1824, 94-96; its connection with pub- 
lic lands, 230-232; reform of, in 
England, 236 ; of 1828, events lead- 
ing up to, 236-246; political as- 
pects of, 239, 240 ; testimony as to 
working of, 243; its nature, 244- 
246; opposition of South to, 246, 
247 ; its operation upon the South, 
248-250; reasons for vote in 1828, 
249-251 ; declared unconstitutional 
by South, 255-257; impossibility 
of its resting stable, 258 ; attempts 
to modify in 1830, 258 ; free trade 
convention meets at New York, 261 ; 
argument of Gallatin against, 261 ; 
argument of protectionist conven- 
tion for, 261 ; revised in 1832, 262- 
264 ; wish of Jackson to reduce, 
263 ; modified in 1833, 332, 335-337; 
resolutions of States upon, 335; 
fails to settle anything, 338. 

Tassel, George, Cherokee murderen 



tried by Georgia, 225; fruitless at- 
tempt of United States Court to 
protect, 226 ; executed, 226. 

Tecumseh, tries to unite northern and 
southern Indians, 36 ; gains over part 
of Creeks, 37 ; killed at battle of 
Thames, 42. 

Tennessee, frontier society in, 6-9 ; 
pioneer settlers of, 7 ; litigation in, 
8 ; politics in, 8, 9 ; frames a consti- 
tution, 13 ; admitted by Congress, 
13 ; votes for Jefferson in 1796, 14 ; 
payment of its claim by Congress 
secured by Jackson, 15 ; abuse of 
credit in, 19 ; sympathizes with 
Burr's scheme, 25 ; votes money 
against Creeks, 37 ; nominates 
Jackson for presidency, 100 ; op- 
poses a congressional caucus, 109; 
again nominates Jackson, 134 ; its 
vote in 1828, 148; establishes a 
State bank and passes relief laws, 
156-159 ; its Court of Appeals de- 
clares acts unconstitutional, 159; 
opposes nullification, 335 ; refuses 
to send delegates to democratic 
convention. 441 j prefers White 
to Van Buren, 441, 444 ; carried by 
Clay in 1844, 460. 

Texas, claim to, abandoned in Flor- 
ida treaty of 1819, 84, 85, 412 ; de- 
mand of slaveholders for, after Mis- 
souri Compromise, 412 ; settlement 
of, by Americans, 413; attempt of 
Adams to buy, 413 ; resists aboli- 
tion of slavery by Mexico, 414 ; re- 
annexation of, agitated, 414 ; its 
dimensions, 415 ; claim of Erving 
regarding, 415; attempt of Van 
Buren to buy, 415 ; Mayo's account 
of plot to revolutionize, 416; re- 
volts, its success, 416, 417 ; emigra- 
tion to, 418 ; action of Gaines in, 
419 ; independence of, recognized, 
419, 421 ; question of its boundaries, 
419, 420; applies for annexation, 
419 ; absurdity of its territorial 
claim, 420 ; again proposes annex- 
ation, 421 ; its annexation urged 
by Jackson, 457-459 ; question of, 
ruins Van Buren, 458, 460. 

Thompson, Smith, in case of Briscoe 
iw. Bank of Kentucky, 423. 

Timberlake, , marries Peggy 

O'Neil, his suicide, 193. 

Toland, Henry, makes favorable re- 
port on Bank, 341. 

Tom kins, Daniel D., reflected Vice- 
President, 92; loses popularity 
through financial difficulties with 
government, 92, 93. 

Troup, George M. , Governor of Geor- 
gia, takes possession of Creek lands, 
222 ; defies Adams, 222 ; denounces 
tariff, but disclaims disunion senti- 
ment, 256. 

Tyler, John, recommends to Con- 
gress to refund Jackson's fine, 57 ; 
refers to Jackson as authority for 
his "exchequer" plan, 286; on 
character of kitchen cabinet, 324 ; 
said to have mediated between 
Clay and Calhoun in 1833, 338 ; re- 
fuses to vote for expunging resolu- 
tions and resigns, 366 ; reports in 
favor of Bank, 368 ; states his at- 
titude on Bank question, 375 ; vote 
for, in 1836, 449 ; his quarrel with 
whigs rejoices Jackson, 456. 

VAN BUREN, MAETIN, his nomination 
by Georgia for vice-presidency 
meets ridicule, 107 ; manages the 
last congressional caucus, 110 ; 
leader of Albany Regency, 111 ; 
seizes position of manager for Jack- 
son, 129, 130 ; hampered previously 
by Crawford's ill-health, 130; or- 
ganizes opposition by New York 
methods, 131-133, 135 ; announces 
devotion to States' rights, 139 ; his 
ambitions cross those of Calhoun, 
181; Secretary of State, 182; not 
a guiding force in administration, 
187 ; struggles with Calhoun for con- 
trol of patronage, 193 ; wins Jack- 
son's heart by courtesies to Mrs. 
Eaton, 196 ; visits Crawford to 
bring about reconciliation with Jack- 
son, 198 ; determined on by kitchen 
cabinet as Jackson's successor, 200 ; 
praised by Jackson in a letter, 201 ; 
refuses to take part in Calhoun 
affair, 206 ; resigns from cabinet, 
209; his oracular letter, 209; ap- 
pointed minister to England, 210 ; 



his instructions to McLane, 210; 
his nomination rejected, 210 ; de- 
termination of Jackson to make 
him President, 211 ; dodges vote on 
tariff, 239; obtains instructions to 
vote for tariff of 1828, 251; at- 
tacked by Calhoun, 251 ; signs peti- 
tion for branch bank at Albany, 
285 ; later condemns federal banks, 
285 ; loses ground in Pennsylvania 
because of New York opposition to 
Bank, 31 6 ; nominated by demo- 
cratic convention only through dic- 
tation of Jackson, 317, 318 ; electo- 
ral vote for, 321 ; his opposition to 
removal of deposits overcome by 
Kendall, 346, 347 ; as Secretary of 
State, orders Poinsett to buy Texas, 
415 ; rejects Texas annexation of- 
fer, 421 ; reluctant to have war, 
421 ; revolt of " equal rights " party 
against, in New York, 433 ; opposi- 
tion to, in Tennessee, 441 ; unani- 
mously nominated to succeed Jack- 
son, 442; his letter of acceptance, 
442 ; his letter to Sherrod Williams 
displeases " equal rights " men, 448 ; 
elected President, 448 ; obliged to 
suffer consequences of Jackson's 
mistakes, 450 ; deserves reputation 
of wire-puller, 450* his character, 
451; shows ability as President, 
451 ; unfortunate in circumstances, 
451, 452 ; his inauguration held by 
Jackson to be a personal triumph, 
452; his nomination prevented in 
1844 by use of Jackson's Texas let- 
ter, 458. 

Vermont, stronghold of anti-masonry, 
293 ; opposes reduction of tariff, 

Virginia, resolves in favor of caucus, 
109 ; led by an oligarchy, 109 ; "re- 
lief laws" in, 152; adopts princi- 
ple of nullification, 257 ; offers to 
mediate with South Carolina, 335; 
condemns dismissal of Duane and 
removal of deposits, 365 ; favors 
expunging resolutions, 366 ; causes 
successive resignations of senators, 
366 ; it's delegates at democratic 
convention refuse to vote for John- 
son, 442. 

Virginia Resolutions of 1798, their 
nature and relation to nullification, 
253 ; explained by Madison, 254. 

WALLACE, JUDGB, in Kentucky land- 
title case, 153. 

War of 1812, causes, 33, 34 ; brought 
on by young republicans, 34 ; unne- 
cessary for redress, 34 ; services of 
Jackson hi, 35-47 ; Creek war dur- 
ing, 37-41 ; defence of Mobile, 43 ; 
Jackson's capture of Pensacola, 
44 ; battle of New Orleans, 45-47 ; 
American defeats in, 47-49 ; finan- 
cial collapse during, 48, 49 ; fails 
to gain avowed objects, 50 ; good 
results from, 51. 

Ward, , massacred by Mexicans, 


Warren, Admiral, offers Madison an 
armistice in 1812, 34. 

Washington, George, appoints Jack- 
son District Attorney, 11 ; opposed 
by Jackson in Congress, 14, 15 ; 
maintains peace by Jay treaty, 31. 

Watkins, Tobias, discovered to be a 
defaulter, 189 ;^ Jackson's virulence 
toward, 189 n. ' 

Wayman vs. Southard, 167. 

Wayne, James M., at meeting in 
Athens to protest against tariff, 
256 ; appointed to Supreme Court, 

Weatherford, chief of Creeks in war 
of 1813, 37. 

Webster, Daniel, favors Calhoun for 
President in 1824, 105; on Jack- 
son's presidential manners, 114 ; 
urges Adams not to proscribe fed- 
eralists, 125 ; on popular feeling 
after election of 1828, 179 ; on oppo- 
sition in Senate to Jackson's nomi- 
nations, 191 ; defends federal judi- 
ciary from attack in Rowan's amend- 
ment, 218 ; his debate with Hayne, 
233, 257 ; on reasons for New Eng- 
land's advocacy of tariff, 237 ; votes 
for tariff of 1828, his reasons, 251 ; 
holds branch drafts legal, 270 ; his 
connection with appointment of 
Mason, 272, 273 ; wearies of consti- 
tutional debate with Calhoun, 334 ; 
attacks compromise tariff, 336 , 



shows moral weakness by abandon- 
ing free trade, 336 ; condemns pet 
bank policy, 357 ; his report on re- 
moval of deposits, 364 ; in 1842 
calls a bank an obsolete idea, 401 ; 
letter of Catron to, on Texas, 418 ; 
defeated by Harrison for anti-ma- 
sonic nomination, 444'; his presiden- 
tial ambitions, 444 ; vote for, 448. 

Webster, Ezekiel, on Calhoun's popu- 
larity in New Hampshire, 105. 

West, demands free land, 232; de- 
mands internal improvements, 232. 

Whig party, not organized before 
1830, 289 ; its national convention 
of 1831, 298; makes Bank the is- 
sue of campaign, 298, 299 ; sup- 
ports banks against metallic cur- 
rency, 389 ; finally abandons Bank, 
401 ; fails to unite in 1834, 439 ; 
coalesces partly with anti-masons, 
444 ; divides between White and 
Harrison, 444, 445. 

White, Hugh L., a claim of his pushed 
by Jackson in Congress, 15 ; refuses 
to resign from Senate to give place 
to Eaton, 212; piqued at Jackson 
for failure to receive War Depart- 
ment, 212 ; goes into opposition, 
365 ; hated by Jackson, 441 ; leads 
Tennessee against Van Buren, 441 ; 
nominated for President, 444 ; vote 
for, in 1836, 448. 

Whitney, Reuben M., accuses Biddle 
of nepotism, 306 ; proved to have 
lied, 306; enters kitchen cabinet, 
306 ; publishes an " Address to the 
American People," 306; urges re- 
moval of deposits, 347 ; suggests it 
to Duane, 349; becomes agent of 
Treasury in dealing with deposit 
banks, 358 ; gives deposits for polit- 
ical reasons, 358, 359. 

Wilkins, William, receives Pennsylva- 
nia's electoral vote in 1832, 321. 

Wilkinson, General James, Jackson's 
contempt for, 26; quarrels with 
Jackson, 35 ; occupies Mobile, 42. 

Williams, John, senator from Tennes- 
see, his popularity, 95 ; defeated 
by Jackson for reelection, 95. 

Williams, Sherrod, interrogates candi- 
dates in 1836, 447. 

Wirt, William, calls South Carolina 
seaman laws unconstitutional, 169 ; 
his opinion reversed by Berrien, 
219 ; holds branch drafts legal, 270 ; 
nominated for President by anti- 
masons, 294 ; his letter of accep- 
tance, 294, 295 ; hopes to be sup- 
ported by national republicans, 295 ; 
later wishes to withdraw, 295 ; vote 
for, in 1832, 321. 

Wood, John, shot by Jackson for in- 
subordination, 40. 

Woodbury, Levi, shocked at a billiard 
table in the White House, 146 ; 
gives place in Senate to Hill, be- 
comes Secretary of Navy, 212 ; com- 
plains to Ingham of Mason, 271, 
272 ; his animosity against Mason 
and Webster, 273 ; elected to Sen- 
ate as an Adams man, 274 ; neutral 
on removal of deposits, 346 ; sends 
report to Congress on banking, 358 ; 
refuses to receive branch drafts, 
374 ; report on circulation, 391. 

Worcester, a missionary, condemned 
for violating Georgia laws concern- 
ing Cherokees, 226 ; refuses at first 
to accept a pardon, 228. 

Worthington, , seizes Spanish 

papers under Jackson's orders, 89. 

Wright, Fanny, her career, 449. 

Wright, Silas, opposes Mallary's wool 
tariff, 243 ; announces pet bank 
policy, 357. 

Clay, 318. 






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\m 17 1959 

JUM ^o ,, 


JUN 2 3 iao9 



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